5 Things You Should Know About Pedestrian Accidents
July 29, 2019
More than 6,200 pedestrians died last year on roadways across the country, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association. This is the highest number of pedestrian deaths in almost 30 years. In addition, many more pedestrians were seriously injured by motor vehicles. Unfortunately, industry experts do not expect the situation to improve. Here is everything you need to know about pedestrian accidents in Michigan.
Michigan is one of the most dangerous states for pedestrian accidents
In Michigan, the number of pedestrian accidents is higher than the national average. In fact, Michigan was ranked the 19th most dangerous state for pedestrians by the annual “Dangerous by Design” report.
In addition, the Detroit/Warren/Dearborn area was ranked the 18th most dangerous metropolitan region in the country for pedestrians. Moreover, Detroit has more than double the national percentage of pedestrians killed by hit-and-run drivers.
Unsettling statistics on Michigan pedestrian accidents
Here are some disturbing facts about pedestrian accidents in Michigan during 2018:
- Pedestrians were involved in 2,203 accidents
- 145 of those pedestrians died as a result of their injuries
- 15% of people who died in Michigan traffic accidents were pedestrians
- 1,979 pedestrians were injured
- 20% of the accidents occurred because a driver failed to yield
- Another 490 accidents were not attributed to a known cause
- 53 pedestrians were killed in alcohol-related accidents
- 171 pedestrians were injured in alcohol-related accidents
- Twice as many males as females were killed or injured in pedestrian accidents
- The highest number of pedestrian accidents (771) in Michigan occurred in Wayne County
- The next highest number of pedestrian accidents happened in Oakland County (196), Kent County (187) and Macomb County (176)
- The majority of pedestrian accidents (1,532) occurred on local streets
- The next highest number of pedestrian accidents happened on state routes (438), followed by 119 accidents on interstate highways and 112 on US routes
Many drivers don’t understand pedestrian traffic laws
In Michigan, pedestrians and motorists are expected to follow the crosswalk rules stated in the Michigan Uniform Traffic Code. According to this law, drivers must yield to pedestrians walking on the same half of the road as an approaching vehicle.
Additionally, drivers are not required to yield to pedestrians who are not crossing lawfully. This means pedestrians have the right of way only if they are obeying traffic signals and crossing in a designated crosswalk. However, many pedestrians are unaware of these regulations and expect motorists to stop, regardless of the circumstances.
To complicate matters further, many municipalities have adopted their own ordinances to make the streets safer for pedestrians. In any case, pedestrians should use extra caution when crossing the street instead of assuming they have the right of way.
Distracted drivers and pedestrians: A deadly combination
Over the last several years, distracted drivers have been causing a growing number of accidents. When you add distracted pedestrians to the mix, the risk of a serious accident increases even further.
Both drivers and pedestrians should refrain from using distracting devices such as cell phones or headphones. An alarming number of motorists and pedestrians are severely hurt or killed because they are focusing on their cell phones instead of the road. In addition, pedestrians using headphones while crossing the street put themselves at further risk. To be safe, all drivers and pedestrians should avoid using electronic devices or engaging in other distracting behaviors.
How does Michigan no-fault apply to pedestrian accident claims?
When a pedestrian is injured in an accident, their medical expenses are usually covered their no-fault Personal Injury Protection (PIP) benefits. This coverage pays for medical expenses and attendant care, in addition to a portion of lost wages and replacement services. A victim who is not more than 50% at fault may also be eligible for pain and suffering compensation. If the pedestrian is killed, their family may receive death benefits through the victim’s PIP coverage.
The laws are somewhat different for pedestrians who are not covered by a Michigan no-fault policy. In that case, the vehicle owner’s policy will usually provide reimbursement for the victim’s accident-related medical costs.
However, Michigan no-fault insurance is very complex. That’s why, if you’re injured in a pedestrian accident, you should contact a qualified accident lawyer as soon as possible. An experienced attorney will make sure you and your family receive the compensation you deserve.
Michigan accident law is complicated, but finding the right lawyer is simple.
Call 1-800-CALL-SAM today for a free, no-obligation consultation.