Pedestrian Accident BLAWG

Jan 22, 2019

Will DOT Be Taking Action Decrease Pedestrian Casualties?

Sports car rushing to hit pedestrian
A man at a pedestrian crossing seen through the window of an oncoming sports car
A man at a pedestrian crossing seen through the window of an oncoming sports car By accident attorney Michael Ehline - So we now have attention deficit disorder and distracted driving. But wait, there is a new crisis for a government agency to use to justify its existence. It is called “Distracted Walking.” The Department of Transportation has become concerned with the rise in pedestrian deaths in recent years. As always, the government’s answer is always more fees, taxes, fines, and regulations (some would say “over-regulation”). This intrusion is always accompanied, of course by a need for more tax-payer funded public employees, a govt employee union, and bloated benefits and pensions. And of course, these are typically much greater and better than a typical worker in the USA. So do the apparent benefits of more regulations reduce societal problems? Or does the bloat and overreach come to the point of diminishing returns? Does common sense, and just being a decent human being play more or less of a role in avoiding pedestrian deaths than it was? If so, why, or why not? What the DOT is Saying About Distracted Walking Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has termed the rise in pedestrian deaths as “distracted walking,” since this more significant number of pedestrians being injured and killed while texting or listening to music. Foxx also said that drugs might also have contributed to this increase in pedestrian deaths. So if you are bee-bopping down street stoned on a joint of marijuana or playing with your cell phone, you could get hurt! Figure? It looks like we need a new law right away to hurt the law-abiding and restrict their freedoms to justify what we did as elected officials and government agencies right? Here it comes. The data for pedestrians that were killed and injured by the Department of Transportation showed a rise from 4,109 in 2009 to 4,432 in 2011. The evidence further indicates that there were 69,000 pedestrians were injured. Oh, my god! LA and Chicago Strike Again With the Highest Pedestrian Death Rates Interesting that dense and overcrowded cities have more people getting hurt on foot. I propose we make big cities illegal. In any event, this data shows Los Angeles, Chicago, and New York have the highest percentages of pedestrian-vehicle collision deaths. (See also, the pedestrian accident attorney blog here.) The rate of pedestrian deaths due to motor vehicles in Los Angeles is 42%. It is 30% in Chicago and 51% in New York. According to a report by the U.S. Product Safety Commission, over 1,500 pedestrians were treated in emergency rooms during 2011. All of these were injured while walking. Or perhaps they were walking and using electronic devices such as a cell phone. First Step More Enforcement and a Safety Campaign - Enter the Federal Grants. So rather than looking at population increases, DOT wants to increase “enforcement” and so-called “education” (“Here is your ticket, now pay up and don’t be distracted sir again”). The answer Foxx said is education and more enforcement, as there would be in a pedestrian safety campaign. There are as many as twenty-two cities that are battling the increase in pedestrian harm and fatalities. These cities have until August 30th to apply for federal grants that have 2 million dollars allocated to deal with distracted walking. Remember, grants can be like the Hotel California. Pure and straightforward, this is a way for the feds to get control over your state. So follow the money. According to Foxx, who plans a pedestrian advocacy summit in the fall that will include the national nonprofit America Walks. This summit is a coalition of groups who advocate improving conditions for pedestrians. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Administrator David Strickland said that everyone should play a role in pedestrian safety. And he stressed that driver’s need to adhere to driving laws. The Safety Data. Figures by the Department of Transportation data shows several details, including 3 out of 4 pedestrians die in urban areas. I fact, at least 2 out of three of these fatalities occurring at locations other than intersections. The highest rate of pedestrian deaths at approximately 70% happens between 8:00 p.m. and 12:00 a.m. is proven in the compiled data. What are The Flaws in the Study? All I can say is no duh. More people get hurt in crowded cities who are on foot. And many of our clients are hit by government buses. So perhaps the government should consider that it is distracted government employees, and maybe not pedestrians. The study also fails to distinguish that in California, the pedestrian has the right of way in most cases. But in New York, the car operator has the right of way unless the person on foot is disabled or blind. So it would be interesting to see how many of these cases are just govt employees running people down. Then all they must do is blame a cell phone or headphones of the person walking down the street, etc. Safety Yes, DOT Regs, and More Enforcement No. At common law, the key is reasonable action. This code is a social code of conduct that is supreme even above a criminal law. It is the basic rule for life. And if a person violates this code, he or she can be sued for negligence, or be hurt or run over by a car, for example. So education and safety are essential. But it is the job of the individual to take responsibility for their actions, get off welfare and government mind control, and be a sovereign unto themselves and their neighbor, always acting with benevolence and graciousness. So yes, right now, I am doing my part, and it did not take a new government employee, or traffic cop to raid your bank account. You just learned from me. Hey, be careful out there and stop screwing around. In any event, there is zero evidence that big government, govt safety campaigns or anything like that reduces anything. Like the war on drugs, this is a problem that educated individuals, not their government minder, figure out themselves. Semper Fi. Other Sources of Information: LA Times Propaganda on Pedestrian Safety Official US Govt Propaganda on Distracted Walking More USDOT Distracted Walking PR LA. Pedestrian Lawyer Site: Video About Pedestrian Accidents:

Jan 6, 2019

Determining Liability in Pedestrian Texting Accidents

Triangle warning sign.
Triangle warning sign with an exclamation point. Forewarn, caution, attention.
Triangle warning sign with an exclamation point. Forewarn, caution, attention. Modern social media and phones have infected every part of contemporary life. No matter where you are or where you go you will always see people enamored by their handheld electronics. The issue seems to be even more so in Southern California. Now with texting and walking and texting while driving, we have two potentially liable parties. Usually, a motorist is responsible almost always when hitting a person on foot. But now, the pedestrian could be 100% at fault for causing their own injury. This exception to the rule is because the walker could have been texting and simply walked directly in front of an oncoming car. In other words, the pedestrian did not have the right of way, and there was no time to slow the vehicle. There are considerable concerns about drivers texting when they should be paying attention to the road. Altogether, these issues are drivers' worst nightmares -- what happens if you strike someone that should have otherwise been paying attention? Experts Can Sift Through the Various Factors to Determine Fault for the Pedestrian Accident. Such answers are not always so clear-cut. There are many factors at play, and some are out of your control. Also, this could include the walker's position on the road or sidewalk. Examples include if they were crossing in a no-crossing zone, weather and lighting conditions, local laws, and other considerations. The complex picture is not one that a simple driver wants to deal with. A Skilled Attorney Leads and Commands His Team of Experts to Come in for the Big Win. Winning is the name of the game, and everything is on the line in a pedestrian accident case. There is no need to be dragged into a multi-year fight over whose fault the accident was. So if you were the pedestrian, we would be able to determine if the driver was not paying attention. Our experts know how to present evidence that will minimize your liability in the accident. His team works with California's best accident reconstructionists to determine exactly how the disabling, jolting event happened. By surveying witnesses, finding any CCTV video, and collecting forensic evidence, the exact cause may get pinpointed. So by putting all of these factors together with Ehline's case-building skills, hopefully, you will win. You can avoid going to court and get back to your life. For more information or to talk to one of Ehline Law's team of experts, call or email us today. We answer the call 24/7 and offer you a chance to get proper legal care. Also, we are available for free consultations to discuss your options. Last, we will travel anywhere in the state to discuss.

Jan 3, 2019

How To Make Crosswalks Safer

Map of Golden State
Sliver shot of California Map
Sliver shot of California Map We cannot take our children's safety too dangerous. Many schools have undertaken significant steps to ensure security inside and outside of the children's school buildings. However, specific steps can be taken to help keep students safer. Parents and those involved in school districts can take part in such an effort. Easy Steps Schools Can Take to Make Street Crossing Safer For example, there are several steps that you can choose. As a result, safety can increase near and in school crossing zones. At times the reduced speed limit near the zones isn't enough. But proper police enforcement is a valuable component. Implementation helps ensure that school zone speed problems stay reduced. The school can also contribute to reducing this through the use of radar control signs. These visible signs are noticed faster by drivers. These signs, if equipped with cameras, provide speeding warning protection. Also, signs and cameras further reduce instances of speeding when used together. Lobbying Caltrans? Furthermore, the school can work with parents in lobbying Caltrans. For example, they can fight to improve signage and lighting near the zones. Safety will increase by placing reduced speed signs in proper and visible spaces. They should be set approaching either side of the crosswalk. Also, bright lights on the crosswalk can improve the situation. For example, as the sun sets they light up with a solar panel and battery. So aside from maintenance issues, these lights work all the time. This battery also helps if a blackout happens. Flashing lights can also alert drivers of the school crossing zone. That gives them a greater area in which to slow their vehicle. Does Direct Parental Action Remains Vital? Parents can also work with the school. For example, they can volunteer to help students cross the street. Presentations can help teach students proper crossing etiquette. And this can make them mindful of their surroundings. These life lessons will stick with these young people for a long time. Also, it will make them safer in many situations. Furthermore, volunteers can become walking school bus volunteers. In fact, volunteers make sure that students can get back and forth from school safe. In conclusion, adult pedestrians and children get in way too many fatal accidents. Due to the fragile nature of kids' bodies, they need protection. Collision avoidance is the best way to protect from severe harm or death. Help take these important steps to help the future generation. Citations:  Child Safety Tips / A Parent's Helpful Guide      School Traffic Safety Committee | Curriculum & Instruction

Jan 3, 2019

Los Angeles Rated Most Unsafe Location for Pedestrians

Female walking with shopping bags.
Pedestrians are often unaware of traffic collision harm
Pedestrians are often unaware of traffic collision harm The 80's New Wave band Missing Person's said it best. "Nobody Walks in L.A." The LADOT outlines some walker safety issues in the city. The NY Times reported how the city is completely different on foot. The LA Times has a helpful map outlining many of the worst places to walk in the city. The City of Angels is made for car traffic. The auto will likely remain the king of the streets here. Living in Los Angeles has benefits, of course, unless it includes walking. The city is better for big rigs than pedestrians. The city remains filled with drivers. In this case, walking in L.A. can lead to deadly collisions with pedestrians. This is because the typical L.A. driver remains unaccustomed pedestrians. So this places people on foot danger of traffic accidents. Collisions have devastating results for the pedestrian in this case. Los Angeles has a large number of intersections with pedestrians hurt. Areas in this instance with repeated incidents of pedestrians hit by cars. The dangers for walkers, in this case, came out in a new study. The study did, as a matter of fact, show the top twenty locations. The number one place went to LA County. Though, the county did have the most pedestrian deaths nationwide. The study used the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration 2014 data. And this showed a large number of pedestrian deaths too. The county did have the highest number of pedestrians hit too. But, it's over one hundred deaths higher over the next location. In fact, the LA County walker's deaths reached double over the second location. That's double the number of deaths in Maricopa County, Arizona. And this, in fact, did hit number two of counties in the top twenty. Though, Maricopa County includes the city of Phoenix. During the same period, Arizona County had 91 pedestrian deaths. Though 91 is a lot, LA County still tops the danger list. Where are the High Numbers of Pedestrian Incidents? Three other counties in California also hit the list. San Diego County hit number four on the list. Though San Bernardino County made number seven on the list. But, Riverside County, in this case, came in at number 14. Of course, fewer pedestrian deaths happened in these counties than in L.A. Florida's other state with many counties on the danger list. Of course, it doesn't have the amount of danger for pedestrians of the Golden State. Believe it or not, California, pedestrian, and car collisions hit a high rate in Redondo Beach. But, of course, it's another city in Los Angeles County. In this case, it included another LA County intersection. Here, it's the intersection of Pacific Coast Highway and Vincent Street. Twenty Most Dangerous Traffic Locations for Pedestrians