Was Your Loved One the Victim of a Fatal Pedestrian Accident?

person-in-crosswalkIf your loved one dies in a pedestrian accident, you could be entitled to compensation for their wrongful death. At Case Barnett Law, our accomplished personal injury lawyers serve clients throughout Orange County and Southern California who have lost a family member due to a negligent driver. 

We understand that a financial recovery can’t bring back your loved one; however, we can help provide peace of mind and closure by fighting to protect your rights and being a compassionate legal advocate when you’re emotionally distressed and looking for answers. Reach out to one of our experienced Costa Mesa personal injury lawyer team today to schedule a free initial consultation. We’ll discuss your claim, and you can learn how we’ll bring our compassion, skills, and reputation to help you and your family.

Losing a loved one is never easy, but it’s especially challenging when they die unexpectedly due to a negligent driver. If your loved one was walking, jogging, or simply crossing the street and was killed by a moving vehicle, it’s essential to hire a lawyer skilled in pedestrian injury accidents. Even if you don’t feel comfortable filing a personal injury claim or a lawsuit, you will likely find that mounting medical expenses, funeral costs, and other financial and emotional strains necessitate legal counsel. Our attorneys explain the frequency of fatal pedestrian accidents in California and why you need representation. 

What You Should Know About Pedestrian Fatalities in California

United States pedestrian fatalities reached a new high in 2022 with nearly 7,500 deaths—the largest number in over 40 years. That means approximately 20 people who stepped outside each day for a walk, a run, or to get to their jobs were killed by a moving vehicle. Pedestrian deaths in California have increased 10% since 2020, and the Golden State has the greatest number of pedestrian deaths of all 50 states. 

Fatal Pedestrian Accident Statistics in California

Fatal pedestrian accidents can happen at any time. Our pedestrian fatality lawyers explain some important statistics:

  • The California pedestrian fatality rate is nearly 25% higher than the national average
  • From 2009 to 2018, an estimated 7,500 pedestrians died in California
  • Preliminary data from the Governor’s Highway Safety Association reported that over 500 California pedestrians were killed by moving vehicles in 2022
  • In 2022, the pedestrian fatality rate in California was 1.29 deaths per 100,000 people—the national rate was 1.04
  • Cities in California that pose the highest risk to pedestrians include Fresno and San Bernardino

Why There Are So Many Pedestrian Fatalities in California

There are many reasons pedestrians are killed in California, and some are factors in pedestrian deaths throughout the U.S. These include:

  • Distracted driving. Many safety experts believe the rise in pedestrian injuries and fatalities is due to an increase in distracted driving. Vehicle drivers whose eyes are on their phones or enhanced vehicle technology instead of the road can cause serious accidents. In the U.S., approximately 1 in 5 pedestrian or bicyclist fatalities are caused by distracted drivers. 
  • Impaired driving. Drugs and alcohol play a significant role in pedestrian deaths. In 2021, nearly 20% of all pedestrian fatalities involved a drunk driver with a BAC of .08 or more. Consequently, 2021 saw more drunk drivers responsible for this type of fatality than usual. In 2018, it was reported that drunk drivers were responsible for nearly 50% of all pedestrian fatalities in California, along with other states.
  • Attitude. Many drivers believe the road belongs to moving vehicles—not bicyclists or pedestrians. In 2021, Minnesota researchers placed cameras at 18 intersections. They found that drivers at crosswalks with no traffic lights stopped for walkers only 60% of the time. Where pedestrians had the right of way, drivers yielded only 10% of the time.
  • Reckless or aggressive driving. Unsafe speeds and hostile, threatening driving behavior can contribute to road fatalities, especially those involving pedestrians. 

Hire the Pedestrian Wrongful Death Attorney at Case Barnett Law 

Pedestrian wrongful death cases can be incredibly complicated because the at-fault driver may claim your loved one was actually responsible for the accident. They may say the pedestrian was distracted and inattentive or darted out into traffic unexpectedly. Your compensation may be reduced if the driver proves that your loved one shared some responsibility for the crash. 

When you hire a skilled pedestrian wrongful death attorney, they will improve your chances of fair compensation by doing the following:

  • Proving the driver was negligent
  • Thoroughly investigating the accident
  • Gathering and analyzing evidence from the scene
  • Analyzing the police report
  • Interviewing witnesses
  • Communicating with the insurance company
  • Obtaining and analyzing your loved one’s medical records, autopsy, and coroner’s report 
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