In California, just like the Vegas Strip, sidewalk accident claims occur more frequently than we like to see since they often cause serious bodily harm. Areas in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Bernardino, San Francisco, San Diego and other urban centers. The aftermath of a motor vehicle versus pedestrian crash on sidewalks can lead to serious injuries or death even when the crash was at a low rate of speed.
What the Auto Speed and Impact Studies Show About Injuries to Walkers and Joggers
Studies on accident impact involving pedestrians or runners show that approximately 75 percent of these crashes happen when the vehicle is traveling 25 miles per hour or slower. The impact between the vehicle and person walking or running can result in various injuries.
Vehicle—Pedestrian Collision Injuries
- Injuries to the Head
There is some harm that can occur when a person is walking is struck by a vehicle. And the leading cause of death in this type of accident is traumatic head injuries. Skull fractures, intracranial swelling, concussions, hematomas, hemorrhages and scalp lacerations are common due to the head hitting either the front, hood or windshield of the vehicle or a hard surface such as concrete of the sidewalk, other objects or ground.
- Legs Injuries
Leg injuries are also common for people walking or running when struck by a vehicle and are a disabling injury. Harm to the legs can include the pelvis, hip, femur, tibia and fibula fractures. There can also be soft tissue injuries such as lacerations and abrasions, along with torn knee ligaments.
The Differences in the Injury Causing Vehicles
If the crash involves an SUV or truck, the torso is more likely to suffer physical damage. This damage is often to the ribcage, liver, and lungs that can be a moderate or severe injury.
- Vehicle—Pedestrian Impacts
When a vehicle and pedestrian crash, the driver usually attempts to brake before the initial impact. When the body is struck by the car, it accelerates to the speed of the vehicle, and even though the driver has slowed the speed, the body does not reduce the speed which it was hit resulting in a forward projection.
When the driver does not attempt to use the brakes or evasive maneuvers to avoid the collision a roof vault interaction can occur, which causes the person walking or running to be sent over the hood of the vehicle and onto the ground behind the car. This is dependent on the vehicle front bumper is lower than the person’s center of gravity. The social center of gravity is located in the area of the belly button.
Another type of vehicle and pedestrian contact can cause the person walking or running to be dragged by the vehicle. This happens in cases where the front bumper of the vehicle is higher than the pedestrian’s center of gravity. The impact causes the person to be knocked down with the vehicle either partially or completely passing over the person.
The person can also be dragged before they are pushed to the ground by the force of the impact. And that is something that can occur at slower speeds. If the person is located more to the side of a vehicle, then the contact may result in a fender vault, which can cause the person to be thrown behind or to the side of the car.
California Statues for Vehicle Sidewalk Pedestrian Crashes
In California, pedestrians have California Vehicle Codes that protect and drivers are required to follow all traffic laws including driving on a sidewalk. The two that involve pedestrians include California Vehicle Code 21663 and California Vehicle Code 21950 and 21952. These statues include the fact that in California drivers must yield to pedestrians.
Legal Counsel in Vehicle Versus Pedestrian Sidewalk Crashes
Drivers are charged with a duty to drive safely. And when an auto swerves or veers onto a sidewalk, it can cause harm to people walking or running. So they are violating the California Vehicle Codes. Hence, the can be charged with negligent or reckless driving along with other charges. After all, they caused the bodily harm. And they have caused manslaughter or murder in cases where pedestrians are killed.
The Southern California law offices of Ehline Law Firm have both the experience and the resources to protect the rights of victims involved in pedestrian sidewalk vehicle collisions in Los Angeles, Orange County, San Bernardino, San Diego, San Francisco, Inland Empire and other areas. Contact us to discuss your case to learn your legal rights as a victim or the family of a loved one’s wrongful death toll-free at 888-400-9721 for a free consultation.