Pedestrian accidents are a serious concern in Florida, and Fetterman & Associates is committed to advocating for pedestrian safety.
With years of experience representing victims of these accidents, our attorneys understand the devastating impact they can have on individuals and families.
Here, you can learn about the most common causes of pedestrian accidents in Florida, prevention strategies, and what to do if you are involved in a pedestrian accident. We aim to raise awareness and promote safer practices for all pedestrians in our communities.
Florida Pedestrian Accident Statistics
According to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles, there were 8,117 pedestrian accidents in Florida in 2020, resulting in 2,265 incapacitating injuries and 715 fatalities.
This marks an increase from the previous year, highlighting the need for continued efforts to improve pedestrian safety. Factors such as distracted driving, failure to yield, and unsafe road conditions are among Florida’s leading causes of pedestrian accidents.
Both drivers and pedestrians need to be aware of their surroundings and follow safety guidelines to prevent future accidents.
Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrian accidents can happen in many situations in the state of Florida. Some of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents include the following:
Distracted driving is a leading cause of pedestrian accidents in Florida. Distractions such as texting, talking on the phone, eating, or adjusting the radio can take a driver’s attention away from the road, making it more difficult to see pedestrians and react in time to avoid a collision.
To prevent distracted driving accidents, drivers should always focus on the road and avoid any activities that take their eyes, hands, or minds off driving.
In addition, Florida has laws that prohibit texting while driving and restrict the use of handheld devices to reduce distracted driving and promote safer roadways for all.
Florida Laws Against Distracted Driving
Florida has laws that prohibit distracted driving, including:
- Texting while driving: It is illegal to text while driving in Florida. This includes reading, typing, or sending texts, emails, or other electronic messages while operating a vehicle.
- Handheld device use: Drivers are not allowed to use handheld electronic devices in school or construction zones or while driving through work zones where construction workers are present.
- Wireless communication device use: Drivers under 18 cannot use wireless communication devices like cell phones while driving.
Violating these laws can result in fines, driver’s license points, and other penalties. By obeying these laws and avoiding distracted driving, drivers can help prevent pedestrian accidents and keep our roads safer.
Failure to Yield
Failure to yield is another common cause of pedestrian accidents in Florida. Drivers who fail to yield the right-of-way to pedestrians at crosswalks, intersections, or other locations can cause serious accidents.
In Florida, drivers are required by law to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks and at intersections with stop signs or traffic signals. Pedestrians also have the right-of-way on sidewalks and in parking lots.
To prevent failure-to-yield accidents, drivers should always be aware of their surroundings, obey traffic signals and signs, and watch for pedestrians, especially in areas with heavy foot traffic or school zones.
Pedestrians should also be aware of their surroundings and ensure their safety by making eye contact with drivers before crossing the street.
Unsafe Road Conditions
Unsafe road conditions can also contribute to pedestrian accidents in Florida. Poorly designed or maintained roads, sidewalks, and crosswalks can create pedestrian hazards.
Common examples of unsafe road conditions include broken pavement, uneven surfaces, and inadequate lighting. To prevent accidents caused by unsafe road conditions, city planners and transportation officials must design and maintain an infrastructure that is safe and accessible for all users, including pedestrians.
This may include installing adequate lighting, repairing broken pavement and uneven surfaces, and ensuring that crosswalks and pedestrian signals are properly marked and maintained. Pedestrians can also protect themselves by walking in well-lit areas and using designated crosswalks and sidewalks whenever possible.
Driving Under the Influence
Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is a serious cause of pedestrian accidents in Florida. Impaired drivers may have reduced reaction times, impaired vision, and impaired judgment, making it difficult to avoid hitting pedestrians.
Florida has strict laws against driving under the influence, including both alcohol and drugs. Penalties for DUI can include fines, license suspension, and even jail time. To prevent pedestrian accidents caused by impaired driving, it is important for drivers to never drive after consuming drugs or alcohol.
If you know you will be drinking, have someone drive you home or use a rideshare service. Pedestrians can also protect themselves by avoiding walking near roads or intersections where impaired drivers may be more likely to be present.
Poorly Designed Crosswalks
Poorly designed crosswalks can also contribute to pedestrian accidents in Florida. Crosswalks not properly marked or located in unsafe areas can increase the risk of pedestrian accidents.
For example, crosswalks near sharp curves or intersections with poor visibility can make it difficult for drivers to see pedestrians in time to avoid a collision. To prevent accidents caused by poorly designed crosswalks, it is important for city planners and transportation officials to carefully consider the location, design, and visibility of crosswalks.
This may include adding pedestrian signals, installing flashing lights, and using high-visibility markings. Pedestrians can also protect themselves by using designated crosswalks whenever possible and making sure that they are visible to drivers by wearing bright or reflective clothing, especially at night or in low-light conditions.
Pedestrian negligence can also contribute to pedestrian accidents in Florida. Pedestrians who fail to follow safety guidelines, such as crossing outside designated areas, jaywalking, or not paying attention to traffic signals, can create hazards for themselves and others on the road.
To prevent accidents caused by pedestrian negligence, it is important for pedestrians always to follow safety guidelines and be aware of their surroundings. This may include crossing the street only at designated crosswalks, obeying traffic signals and signs, and looking both ways before crossing the street.
Pedestrians should also avoid distractions such as using their phones or headphones, especially when crossing the street. By taking these simple steps, pedestrians can help to prevent accidents and ensure their safety on the road.
What to Do if You Are Involved in a Pedestrian Accident
If you are involved in a pedestrian accident, it is important to take the following steps:
- Stay at the scene and call 911 if anyone is injured;
- Exchange information with the driver, including their name, contact information, and insurance information;
- Take photos of the accident scene, including any damage to the vehicle and your injuries; and
- Gather contact information from any witnesses who saw the accident.
Even if you feel fine after a pedestrian accident, seeking medical attention as soon as possible is important. Some injuries may not be immediately apparent and could become life-threatening if left untreated.
Contact Fetterman & Associates, PA, for Help with Your Pedestrian Accident Claim
After a pedestrian accident, contacting a personal injury attorney as soon as possible is important. Our experienced injury attorneys can help you understand your legal rights and options for pursuing compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, and other damages.
We can also help you navigate the complex legal process and negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf.