Pedestrian Accidents

Stepping into Danger:
Unveiling the Hidden Risks of Pedestrian Accidents

Understanding the Laws of Pedestrian Accidents

A pedestrian accident, within the law, refers to an event where an individual who is on foot is struck by a vehicle or comes into harmful contact with a vehicle in a manner that causes injury or harm. This definition encompasses a broad range of scenarios and vehicles, and understanding the legal implications of such incidents is critical for providing appropriate counsel and representation.

Pedestrian accidents, unfortunately, are a common occurrence and can happen in various contexts. At Harsh Law, we understand the complexity of a pedestrian lawsuit is seldom straightforward. The following list outlines the most common types of pedestrian accidents that other individuals have faced, each with its own unique circumstances and potential legal considerations:


  • Crosswalk Accidents: These occur when a pedestrian is struck by a vehicle while legally crossing the street at a designated crosswalk. Often, these accidents are due to driver inattention or failure to yield the right of way.
  • Hit-and-Run Accidents: In these incidents, a vehicle strikes a pedestrian and then leaves the scene without stopping to help or exchange information. These cases can be particularly challenging due to the difficulty in identifying the offending vehicle.
  • Parking Lot Accidents: Parking lots can be hazardous for pedestrians due to the close proximity of moving vehicles and pedestrians. Accidents often occur due to drivers reversing or not noticing pedestrians while navigating the parking area.
  • Pedestrian Accidents Involving Children: These accidents often occur near schools, parks, or residential areas and may involve drivers who are not paying attention to children playing or crossing the street.
  • Sidewalk Accidents: Pedestrians can be hit on sidewalks by vehicles losing control, jumping the curb, or in situations where the sidewalk is shared with bicycles or other modes of transportation.
  • Vehicle Back-Over Accidents: These typically occur in driveways or parking lots, where a vehicle reverses into a pedestrian that the driver failed to see.
  • Intersection Accidents: Intersections are common sites for pedestrian accidents, especially in urban areas. These accidents can occur due to drivers running red lights, making illegal turns, or not yielding to pedestrians at intersections.
  • Public Transportation Accidents: These include incidents where pedestrians are struck by buses, trams, or other forms of public transport, often in bus lanes or near transit stops.
  • Accidents Due to Poor Road or Weather Conditions: Poorly maintained roads, inadequate lighting, or inclement weather conditions can lead to pedestrian accidents, where liability may extend beyond the driver to include city or municipal entities responsible for road maintenance.
  • Distraction-Related Accidents: With the rise of smartphone use, both drivers and pedestrians can be distracted, leading to accidents that could have been avoided with full attention on the road and surroundings.
  • Drunk Driving Accidents: These involve pedestrians being hit by drivers under the influence of alcohol or drugs, which significantly impairs their driving abilities and reaction times.
  • Construction Site Accidents: Pedestrians walking near or through construction zones may be at risk due to the presence of heavy machinery, falling debris, or uneven surfaces.


Common Injuries Resulting From Pedestrian Accidents

Each type of pedestrian accident presents unique challenges and requires thorough investigation to determine liability and secure just compensation for the injured parties. As a personal injury lawyer, understanding the specifics of each scenario is crucial in providing effective legal representation to victims of pedestrian accidents.

The vulnerability of pedestrians makes these accidents particularly concerning, often leading to serious injuries or even fatalities. As legal advocates for victims of such accidents, the legal experts at Harsh Law understand the physical, emotional, and financial toll they can take.

As part of your recovery, we help first start with identifying common physical injuries that can occur as a result of a pedestrian accident. These include:


  • Head Injuries: Head trauma, including concussions and traumatic brain injuries (TBIs), are among the most severe consequences of pedestrian accidents. These injuries can result from the pedestrian’s head striking the vehicle or the ground, leading to long-term cognitive, physical, and emotional impairments.
  • Spinal Cord Injuries: Spinal injuries can range from herniated discs to severe spinal cord damage, potentially resulting in paralysis. Such injuries can have a life-altering impact, often requiring extensive medical treatment and long-term care.
  • Broken Bones: The force of an impact with a vehicle can easily break bones. Common fractures in pedestrian accidents include broken arms, legs, hips, and ribs. Recovery may involve surgeries, physical therapy, and extended periods of immobilization.
  • Soft Tissue Injuries: Soft tissue injuries, such as sprains, strains, and tears, are common and can vary significantly in severity. While some may heal with rest and physical therapy, others might require surgical intervention.
  • Internal Injuries: The impact of a pedestrian accident can cause internal injuries, including internal bleeding and organ damage. These injuries are particularly dangerous as they may not be immediately apparent following the accident.
  • Psychological Trauma: Beyond physical injuries, pedestrian accidents can have a profound psychological impact, leading to conditions like post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), anxiety, and depression. These emotional scars can be just as debilitating as physical injuries.


Injuries resulting from pedestrian accidents can be devastating, altering the course of a victim’s life. It’s crucial for those affected to seek comprehensive medical evaluation and care following an accident.


Understanding Your Legal Rights

As a California resident, you have specific legal rights if you are involved in a pedestrian accident. Understanding these rights is crucial to ensure you are adequately protected and compensated for any injuries or losses you may have sustained. Here’s an overview:


  • Right to Medical Treatment: You have the right to receive immediate and appropriate medical treatment for your injuries. This is paramount, not only for your health and well-being but also for documenting your injuries, which is essential for any legal claim you may pursue.
  • Right to File a Police Report: You should report the accident to the police as soon as possible. This ensures that there is an official record of the incident, which can be vital in legal proceedings or insurance claims.
  • Right to Compensation for Damages: If the accident was due to someone else’s negligence or unlawful behavior, you have the right to seek compensation. This can include medical expenses, lost wages, pain and suffering, and other related costs.
  • Right to Insurance Claims: Under California law, motorists are required to carry insurance. You have the right to file a claim against the driver’s insurance policy. Additionally, if the driver is uninsured or underinsured, you may have recourse through your own insurance if you have uninsured motorist coverage.
  • Statute of Limitations: In California, the statute of limitations for personal injury claims is generally two years from the date of the accident. It’s important to act within this timeframe to preserve your right to bring a claim.
  • Comparative Fault Rules: California follows a, “pure comparative negligence” rule. This means that if you are found to be partially at fault for the accident, your compensation may be adjusted by your percentage of fault.
  • Right to Legal Representation: You have the right to consult with and be represented by an attorney. An experienced personal injury lawyer can offer guidance, represent your interests in negotiations with insurance companies, and help you navigate the legal process.



Make Your Call To Harsh Law

If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident, our experienced legal team is here to help navigate the complexities of your case and advocate for the compensation you deserve.

We believe in leveling the playing field for motorcyclists by addressing and overcoming prejudice at every turn. If you’ve been involved in a motorcycle accident in California, we are here to offer our expertise and support.

Call Harsh Law at (909) 793-6261 today for your complimentary consultation.