Motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians on Washington highways pose complicated issues. Although pedestrians generally shouldn’t walk along highways, some circumstances necessitate such actions. When circumstances require pedestrians to be on highways, they must exercise additional care to avoid involvement in an accident that could involve serious injuries.
Why would a pedestrian be on a highway?
More pedestrians than you think are on highways. In fact, more than 10% of all pedestrian fatalities from motor vehicle accidents occur on interstate highways. These are some of the most common reasons why drivers would encounter pedestrians on highways:
- Crossing or entering traffic
- Walking along the highway
- Walking or standing on the shoulder
- Pushing or working on vehicles that have broken down
- Tending to a vehicle involved in a crash
Anyone who hits a pedestrian on the highway may be subject to a lawsuit. In some circumstances, pedestrians injured in a highway incident may also cite federal or state agencies responsible for designing the highway, road construction, or other factors like repairs and maintenance if those factors contributed to injuries, as those bodies must exercise reasonable care if pedestrians end up on highways. However, the main reason motorists hit pedestrians on highways is that they don’t see them until the last minute and can’t stop or otherwise avoid them.
What happens if I am injured in a pedestrian highway accident?
The first thing that you should do if injured in a pedestrian highway accident is to get medical attention. Frequently, the defendant, along with insurance companies, will try to pin the blame on you, indicating that you did not take sufficient care for your own safety while along the side of the road.
Whenever you find yourself in a situation where you must be on the side of a highway, such as changing a tire, you should attempt to stay as far off the road as possible. Nevertheless, discovering factors such as excessive speed or other road design that made it impossible for you to keep safe can possibly help you recover damages in a lawsuit when you have suffered injuries.