Even with Georgia legislature changing to restrict mobile phone use while driving, the number of pedestrian accidents is on the rise. Recently, two victims died in Fulton and DeKalb as they tried to cross busy streets. Already this year, 111 pedestrians have been killed on Georgia roads.
This number is an increase of 16% from the same time last year when 260 pedestrians died throughout the entire year according to the Georgia Department of Transportation. The number of pedestrian accident fatalities has increased nationwide, as well. Officials blame the increase in fatalities on busier roads and people crossing the road outside of designated areas.
Hit and Run Pedestrian Accidents
In 2016, experts ranked Georgia fourth in the United States for the most fatal hit and run accidents. Some 72 people died in hit and run pedestrian accidents that year. The incident that left 25-year-old Martavious Parker dead in DeKalb was one such crash. The accident occurred Sunday around 11:40 p.m. when Parker left work at McDonalds and was walking home. A driver struck him and left the man to die on the road. Parker was in the crosswalk when the driver hit him.
What Georgia Laws Say About Pedestrians
Georgia law says that vehicles are required to stop for pedestrians walking in crosswalks and must stay stopped. The vehicles cannot swerve around a pedestrian or attempt to squeeze past them. If a pedestrian is close to approaching a crosswalk and is within one lane of the vehicle; the vehicle must stop. Cautious drivers should always be on the lookout for pedestrians, but unfortunately, with so many distractions easily at hand, that is not always happening.
Studies have consistently shown that drivers in the Peach State are some of the worst drivers in the country. They rank in the bottom one-third of the nation based on statistics when it comes to fatality rates, failure to abide by seat belt and traffic laws, careless driving, drunk driving, and tickets, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. This means it is particularly important for both drivers and pedestrians to be alert.
Although we like to think that pedestrian accidents are often due to a negligent driver, at times, there could be some contributory negligence on the part of a pedestrian as well. This negligence could result in a vehicle striking the pedestrian. Many people cross streets every day, but if they are having an important telephone conversation, texting, or listening to music, they may not be paying attention to the dangers around them. Pedestrians themselves need to be aware of their surroundings and exercise reasonable care for their safety.
How an Attorney Can Help After a Pedestrian Accident
If you or your loved one received injuries due to the negligence of a Georgia driver, or worse yet, your loved one has died due to another’s negligence, you may be eligible for compensation. On the other side, if were were the driver in a pedestrian accident, you need help, too. The attorneys at Lankford & Moore Law can help you understand and protect your rights. Contact them today for a consultation.