There are several pedestrian accidents causes that you need to pay attention to when exploring the eye-catching Las Vegas strip and architecture on foot, whether you live here or not. If you are injured during these accidents, you should contact an experienced attorney like the Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney Law Firm. We have qualified and experienced attorneys who have assisted many victims of a pedestrian accident, receiving adequate compensation for accident damages and injuries.
What You Should Know About Pedestrian Accidents Causes in Las Vegas
For first time visitors, many people visiting Las Vegas get awed by the city’s glamorous hotels and casinos, architecture, and people's lifestyle, which puts them at risk of pedestrian accidents from reckless and drunk drivers. Over forty-million people visit this amazing city every year in pursuit of fun activities and business deals. Regardless of your reason for visiting Las Vegas, you need to be aware of pedestrian accidents’ common causes to exercise proper precautions when traversing the busy streets with fast-moving cars.
According to reports by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration of Las Vegas, pedestrian accidents are still on the rise in the city, accounting for about fifteen percent of all traffic fatalities reported yearly. According to Las Vegas pedestrian laws, a pedestrian is any person doing either of the following:
- Riding any motorized mobility assistance device
- Riding a device that requires effort to propel like skateboards, roller skates, un-electronic scooters, wheelchairs, or skis
Remember, bicyclists and other people riding motorized bikes, hoverboards, and e-scooters are not considered a pedestrian. As much as motorists ought to observe a reasonable duty of care while driving around, pedestrians also should be reasonably careful while traversing the streets to avoid foreseeable accidents. Whether you’re walking through a vehicle parking lot, crosswalks, sidewalks, or anywhere in public, you might be at risk of pedestrian accidents if you are not careful and observant.
Pedestrian accidents can lead to severe injuries to anyone who falls victim. However, some people, such as children, elderly, physically-hand capped, and drunk people are more prone to severe injuries in the occurrence of a pedestrian accident. Pedestrian accident victims are likely to suffer the following injuries after an accident:
- Lacerations, cuts, scarring, and bruises
- Broken bones
- Internal body organ and brain injuries
- Spinal, neck and head injury
- Facial trauma
After a pedestrian accident, there are a few things that you need to do to avoid taking the accident liability and also to get adequate reimbursement for your damages and injuries. After a pedestrian accident, you should do the following:
- Report the accident to the police so that the officer can take the accident report which will be crucial in proving accident liability
- Get contact information of at least two eyewitnesses at the accident scene.
- Take the vehicle registration number of the other accident victims, driver’s license, and insurance information.
- Get the name and contact information of all the accident victims.
- Capture detailed photos and videos of the accident scene and injuries sustained
- Notify your insurance provider
- Contact a personal injury attorney.
This article will discuss the most common pedestrian accident causes and potential grounds for proving the pedestrian accident liability in a personal injury lawsuit in Las Vegas. After a pedestrian accident, always seek the services of a personal injury attorney to get an insight into what you should do to avoid taking the accident liability also to know how you seek compensation for damages resulting from the accident.
Major Pedestrian Accident Causes in Las Vegas
A majority of pedestrian accidents that occur in Las Vegas are caused by vehicles, although they are not the only causes of pedestrian accidents. A pedestrian accident caused by a motorist is often due to the following circumstances:
Failure to Yield at The Pedestrian Crosswalks
Every motorist ought to observe a reasonable duty of care when approaching a location with several pedestrians. He/she should even be more vigilant at the crosswalks where pedestrians have the right to cross the streets to avoid unnecessary accidents because older people and children are a bit slow at the crosswalks.
According to the state’s laws, a driver should yield to pedestrians at crosswalks or stop if there is a need to give them their right of way. Other vehicles approaching the crosswalk should not overtake a vehicle that is not moving to give pedestrians their right of way. Failure to yield when approaching a pedestrian crosswalk can lead to an unexpected accident, and the driver should be held liable for damages and injuries.
Failure to Observe Traffic Signs and Signals
All motorists are subject to the state’s traffic laws and regulations. When a motorist fails to observe the set traffic signs and signals when intersecting roads, he/she can lead to a pedestrian accident. The traffic signs do not only give the driver anticipation of what to expect on the way but also helps him/her to understand when it’s safe to cross specific roads. Traffic signs and signals help control traffic flow, making the streets and highways safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and other motorists.
DUI of Drugs and Alcohol
DUI of alcohol and drugs is a criminal offense in Las Vegas and is also the leading cause of the most pedestrian accident in this city. In Las Vegas, you should expect many cases of people driving under the influence of drugs and alcohol since it’s a city of all kinds of fun. As much as you might be observing your reasonable duty of care as a pedestrian on the traffic, other drivers who are under the influence of drugs and alcohol might not have regard for you.
Driving under the influence affects a driver’s concentration on the road, which puts other motorists and pedestrians at risk of accidents. Intoxication affects a driver’s judgment ability while on the road to notice a foreseeable accident ahead of time for necessary precautions. If the intoxicated driver responsible for the pedestrian accident is guilty of DUI, you can still file a lawsuit for all the damages and injuries you suffer as a result of the accident before he/she faces criminal actions for DUI.
Over Speeding and Reckless Driving
Over speeding and reckless driving are some of the major causes of most pedestrian accidents in the city of Las Vegas. To curb the habit of overspeeding and reckless driving, the state has heavy penalties for drivers who are found guilty of this traffic offense. Over speeding is a misdemeanor offense in Las Vegas, which can attract a fine of up to $1000 and six-months jail term depending on the circumstances of the arrest. The fine penalty doubles for over speeding in some specific locations such as schools and work areas. Reckless driving is any motorist movement actions that portray disregard for human life and property. A person is said to be driving recklessly if:
- He/she disrespects a traffic officer’s order
- Drive at a significant speed over the set driving speed at that specific location
- Runs the red lights signal
In Las Vegas, a motorist driving recklessly hence leading to a pedestrian accident, will receive misdemeanor penalties as long as he/she did not lead to physical injuries or death of any individual, which will otherwise become a felony offense.
Driving with Defective Vehicle Parts
Driving with a defective vehicle part can lead to an unexpected pedestrian accident. Every motorist should maintain and repair their vehicle regularly to keep it in a safe driving condition. Defective parts are not a common cause of a pedestrian accident in Las Vegas. There are always two parties that are to blame in the event of a pedestrian accident involving a defective vehicle part, that is:
- The vehicle part manufacturer
- The vehicle assemblers/seller
- The experts responsible for the vehicle repair and maintenance
As a pedestrian accident victim, you need to understand the causes of the accident that you were a victim before you can take any legal actions. You’ll need an injury attorney’s services to review the case elements to establish the pedestrian accident cause for you to know the next legal step after the incident.
Other Potential Pedestrian Accidents Causes in Las Vegas
Apart from cars, there are also other possible causes of pedestrian accidents that can lead to injuries and damages when you get knockdown. Below are other potential causes of pedestrian accidents that you need to pay attention to while walking around in Las Vegas:
People Jogging on The Sidewalk
Sometimes people exercising and jogging on the street might have no regard for other pedestrians sharing the crosswalk. Many people in Las Vegas opt to use street sidewalks to avoid the busy streets. In Las Vegas, it’s not an option as this is the only place safe for pedestrians because of the many cars in the traffic.
Although sidewalks are safe places for people to jog while exercising, everyone sharing the crosswalk needs to observe his/her duty of care to avoid injuring or causing damages to the other pedestrians. A reckless and inconsiderate jogger sharing the sidewalks with other pedestrians should be held guilty for any injuries and damages he/she causes.
Uncontrolled dogs can also cause pedestrian accidents if they knock someone down while running, especially the children. Every dog owner in Las Vegas should control their pets while on the streets with pedestrians to avoid unnecessary accidents. Loose dogs might also chase a pedestrian and suffer injuries when he/she trips over and falls.
Although a dog leads to a pedestrian accident that leads to your injuries and damages, it’s the pet owner who will be liable for the actions of his/her dog. You’ll need a personal injury attorney to prove that the dog owner was negligent in controlling his/her pets if you’re seeking remedy for damages resulting from a pedestrian accident.
Bike Cycling on The Sidewalk
Las Vegas law does not prohibit people from cycling on the sidewalks; however, in some parts of the city, there are ordinances preventing people from cycling in certain areas that every cycler must observe. You should expect cyclers to share the sidewalks with you if you are new in Las Vegas; however, they should observe reasonable care to prevent pedestrian accidents. If you think specific cyclist actions on the sidewalk disregard human life or property due to how they cycle, you can file a lawsuit against the person if you incur damages as a result of their negligence.
A Truck or Bus Moving Near the Sidewalk
Most buses and trucks have these long side mirrors, which extend out beyond the vehicle's edge. Side mirrors extending out beyond the bus or truck’s edge pose a safety hazard to pedestrians walking on the sidewalk, especially if the vehicle is moving near the sidewalk. Every truck and bus driver should undergo thorough training before handling these types of vehicles on the road or highway.
A driver who fails to pay adequate attention while driving these vehicles should be liable for all the injuries and damage his/her vehicle cause while on the line of duty. Victims of pedestrian accidents resulting from extended truck/bus side mirrors can file a lawsuit against the driver for being careless or negligent.
Groups of People Who Refuse to Share the Walkway
There is no exact law that specifies the number of people who can share a sidewalk/walkway at a given time. However, some groups of pedestrians who are not courteous and respectful might sometimes fail to give way to other pedestrians sharing the crosswalk hence causing pedestrian knockdown, which can lead to injuries.
Every pedestrian on the crosswalk should yield the right way to other pedestrians so that they can pass easily to avoid knockdowns, which can lead to injuries. Groups of people who try to act tough by refusing to yield on the way so that you can pass should be liable for damages and injuries you incur if they knock you down.
Legal Grounds for Personal Injury Lawsuit When Determining Pedestrian Accidents Causes and Liability
Victims of a pedestrian accident on the road or the sidewalk can file a lawsuit for personal injuries or damages resulting from the accident after identifying the at-fault party. Various parties might be responsible for causing a pedestrian accident. Below are legal grounds for establishing pedestrian accidents causes and liability:
Negligence in a pedestrian accident occurs when pedestrians, bicyclists, or motorists fail to observe their obligation of reasonable care towards other people, hence causing harm or damage. People who fail to exercise reasonable care towards other people, whether in public, work, or school, should be liable for damages and injuries resulting from an accident they cause. Below are legal elements for proving negligence in a personal injury lawsuit in Nevada:
Duty of Care
Duty of care is a legal responsibility that every person has to protect other people from harm. Whether a driver, cyclist, or fellow pedestrian, every person has a legal obligation to exercise a reasonable duty of care towards other people to protect their safety and property. Duty of care obligation is different depending on the circumstances of the pedestrian accident. The duty of care will often be self-evident in different accident circumstances as long as there was a relationship between the defendant and the plaintiff during the occurrence of the pedestrian accident.
Breach of the Duty of Care
A person who breaches his/her obligation of exercising a duty of care towards other people (hence causing a pedestrian accident) should be liable for any accident damages and injuries. A driver can breach his/her duty of care towards other people if he/she is texting while driving. The plaintiff and his/her injury attorney can demonstrate the following pieces of evidence to prove the defendant’s duty of care breach:
- Surveillance video of the accident scene if any
- Vehicle maintenance records
- Eyewitnesses testimony
While in court, it’s not enough to prove to the jury that the defendant breached his/her duty of care. The plaintiff must also demonstrate to the judge how the defendant’s actions that lead to the duty of care breach made you sustain injuries and damages after the pedestrian accident. For instance, if a driver is texting while driving and swerves on the pedestrian sidewalk hence causing injuries to a pedestrian. Such evidence shows that the defendant’s negligent actions were the actual cause of your injuries and damages, which he/she will be found liable. Eyewitness testimonies and surveillance videos from the accident scene will also be essential in proving causation in a negligence case.
Damages are costs that an accident victim incurs after an accident through medical bills and vehicle repair costs. In a pedestrian accident, a person is likely to incur medical damages after sustaining injuries in a knockdown. A plaintiff seeking reimbursement in a pedestrian accident should provide his/her medical bills and invoices to prove to the insurer and the jury that there were damages resulting from the pedestrian accident. Below are examples of common damages resulting from a pedestrian accident:
- Pain and suffering
- Medical bills
- Lost wages
- Lost earning capacity
Negligence Per Se
Negligence per se is a legal doctrine that requires people who violate a statute or law to be liable for all injuries and damages they cause after an accident due to their negligence actions of violating a statute meant to prevent such accidents.
A drunk driver who hits a pedestrian due to his/her reckless driving should be held liable for damages and injuries under “negligence per se” legal doctrine for violating Nevada DUI laws. A skilled and experienced personal injury attorney will help you to collect pieces of evidence that can prove that the defendant was negligent under the “negligence per se” legal doctrine.
“Respondeat superior” is a legal phrase from the Latin language that applies in the vicarious liability doctrine where an employer is liable for his/her employee actions, leading to injuries and damages to other people. An employee who causes injuries and damages to another person must be under the control of a particular employer for this theory of “respondeat superior” to apply when seeking compensation. The employee must also be within the scope of his/her employment for you to file a lawsuit against their employer for damages and injuries you suffer in a pedestrian accident.
Strict Products Liability
A pedestrian accident victim can also file a lawsuit against the manufacturer of a certain vehicle or motorbike under strict product liability legal doctrine after incurring damages and injuries in an accident. Under Nevada strict products liability laws, the plaintiff in a pedestrian accident needs to prove the following when seeking reimbursement for accident damages and injuries:
- A particular product or part of a vehicle was defective due to its design
- The product or part was faulty when it left the manufacturers/defendant’s possession
- The defective part was reasonably foreseeable by the manufacturer/defendant, but he/she failed to warn the users
- The defective/faulty party lead to the plaintiff damages and injuries
Most manufactures are financially stable to offer an adequate settlement to a plaintiff’s damages and injuries resulting from an accident without undergoing trial. However, some companies or manufacturers might still be ignorant to offer a claimant his/her settlement for accident damages; therefore, in that case, you should file a lawsuit against them with the help of a personal injury attorney.
Pedestrian accidents involving vehicles tend to be fatal in terms of injuries. If a pedestrian accident victim dies as a result of the accident, the surviving family, such as the spouse or children, can file a lawsuit for wrongful death in Nevada. With the help of a personal injury lawyer, the surviving family will have to prove the jury’s following in a wrongful death lawsuit:
- The pedestrian accident victim died
- The plaintiff seeking reimbursement is an heir of the accident victim
- The demise of the accident victim was a result of the defendant’s wrongful and negligent acts
- There were monetary damages after the demise of the pedestrian accident victim
When proving pedestrian accidents cause and liability in a personal injury lawsuit, you must hire a skilled and experienced injury attorney through the whole process for adequate legal representation.
Find a Pedestrian Accident Personal Injury Attorney Near Me
The success rate of any personal injury lawsuit depends on the skills and experience of the personal injury attorney offering you legal representation. Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorney Law Firm has reputable professionals who are skilled in determining pedestrian accident causes and liability. You can reach us at 702-996-1224 to schedule an appointment with our attorneys.