A negligent or reckless driver is not the only hazard to pedestrians on roadways and at street intersections. Poor design and maintenance of these structures can also pose a significant risk to pedestrians. So, who is responsible for making sure that pedestrians are safe in these areas? Usually the governmental entity responsible for maintaining, which could be the city, county, municipality or state.
Intersections are the most common location for any type of vehicular accident including those involving pedestrians. Poor visibility, excessive shrubbery, dim lighting, and a lack of crosswalks all increase the risk of a collision. Inadequate, malfunctioning, or missing signage and signals are also major culprits. The proximity of parked cars affects visibility as well.
An experienced attorney can review the history of accidents at a particular intersection, going over police reports and complaints from local residents to help determine whether the location contributed to the accident.
Some roadways are simply more dangerous than others. Design flaws, poor construction and insufficient maintenance can lead to dangerous conditions for drivers and pedestrians.
Design flaws: Some roadways have serious design flaws that can lead to a tragic collision. For instance, entrance and exit ramps may be too short and force drivers to either accelerate or brake faster than is reasonably safe.
Lack of signage: The entity responsible for maintaining the roadway must provide proper warning signs of any approaching conditions. This is true not only for vehicles, but pedestrians as well. If it is not safe for pedestrians to cross at a certain location, it is important to post a sign to that effect.
Lack of crosswalks: Motorists in the state of Washington are required to yield right-of-way to pedestrians who are walking in marked or unmarked crosswalks. If pedestrians are forced to cross a roadway in a dangerous manner due to lack of a proper crossing, negligence can be claimed.
Visibility issues: Parked cars, foliage, blocking walls, and other structures can hamper a motorist’s view of a crosswalk or intersection and increase the risk of a pedestrian accident.
Some busy roadways or intersections may need additional safety devices such as flashing lights, stop signs, or even a traffic light. When a government entity fails to fulfill these duties, and knowingly allows a dangerous condition to exist on the roadway, then it could be held liable for personal injuries or fatalities that are caused as a result.
Determining liability in a personal injury case, especially a pedestrian accident, can be complicated. Please contact the skilled and experienced lawyers at the Bernard Law Group. We will make sure that the negligent parties are held accountable in your case and that you receive just compensation for your injuries, damages, and losses.
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IF YOU, OR A LOVED ONE, HAVE BEEN SERIOUSLY INJURED AS A RESULT OF A WASHINGTON PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT – CALL TODAY FOR A FREE CONSULTATION!