Glendale Pedestrian Accident Attorneys
Live in Los Angeles County for a long enough time and you realize how difficult it is to get around by foot. While public transportation systems are steadily expanding and there are a number of jogging and biking paths riddle throughout individual neighborhoods, this is really a driver’s county. Still, many residents walk to work or between bus stops during their daily lives and are often at the mercy of reckless drivers. Either because they are distracted or have gotten into habit of making a “California stop,” drivers often neglect the right of way of pedestrians and cause catastrophic injuries, from broken legs to brain injuries.
If you were injured or your loved one was killed after being struck by a car, truck, or another vehicle, the Glendale pedestrian accident attorneys at Aghabegian & Associates, PC can provide invaluable legal advice. Our law team has been protecting the rights of LA County residents for over two decades and have secured hundreds of millions of dollars for injured clients. We provide compassionate, personalized legal counsel when going up against major insurance corporations to ensure you receive a fair shot at recovery.
Call our office at (818) 507-4311 or contact us online to request your free consultation with one of our attorneys.
Los Angeles County is one of the most dangerous counties for joggers and everyday walkers, according to the Los Angeles County Public Health Department. These accidents can lead to serious injuries, especially for individuals younger than 20-years old or older than 60. In the event of a pedestrian-vehicle collision, the person on foot is far more likely to suffer severe, catastrophic injuries. Speed ultimately plays a huge factor in these accidents, as the severity of these injuries can rise drastically for vehicles moving 20-miles per hour or higher than those traveling less than 20-miles per hour.
In addition to speed, there are a number of other factors that can contribute to a pedestrian accident, including:
Distracted Driving: While it is illegal in California, many drivers still use their smart phones while driving, either to take photos, send a text, or control their music. The few seconds we look away from our phones can be the deciding factor in a pedestrian accident.
Low Light/Fog: While we like to see southern California as a sunny paradise, our county often suffers under the weight of heavy fog during the early mornings when many of us are on the road. This can be especially dangerous when coming off the freeway as we cannot always tell if a pedestrian is in the crosswalk as we try to lower our speed. In addition, many neighborhoods have limited streetlamps that make it hard for drivers to easily spot pedestrians or even parked vehicles.
California Stops: Rolling stops are a bad habit that many Californians have developed during our daily commutes and it often leads to dangerous accidents for joggers. Drivers can easily strike a pedestrian who is almost done walking the street in front of them as they roll into a right turn or hit someone who is just stepping off the curb and has the right of way. Stopping at all red lights and stop signs and slowing for yield signs is the best way to protect pedestrians.
Street Construction: LA is constantly under construction, from our major highways like the I-10 to our side-streets. As a result, many pedestrians are blocked from following their normal route and have to cross traffic multiple times to get to a destination. This can lead to jaywalker or to pedestrians moving against the flow of traffic, which can lead to an accident.
High-Density Streets: Parking in Los Angeles County is one of the major downsides to living here. Most side streets are packed with residents’ cars and even some major roadways have entire bike lanes blocked off by commercial vehicles. Because of this, drivers have limited visibility when making sharp right turns and may not see a pedestrian stepping into the crosswalk. In turn, pedestrians are not able to protect themselves because they cannot see oncoming traffic that is about to make a turn.
Complex Roadways: One of the major factors is neighborhood design. When you compare a map of Glendale to Burbank, Los Angeles, Hollywood, or any city in the San Gabriel Valley, you will notice a lot of different styles of roadways. Highways crisscross the entire county, some stopping drastically in city centers, such as the connection between the 110 and Route 66. Rarely do any roads directly connect multiple cities, with the exception to the aforementioned Route 66, which spans the entire county. Because of this mix-match or roads, many neighborhoods have sharp turns, hidden entrances, and complex suburban roadways, which make it difficult for drivers to spot pedestrians.
All too often, pedestrians suffer debilitating injuries—such as spinal cord injuries and traumatic brain injuries—when they are hit by cars, trucks, vans, and other motor vehicles. The physical, emotional, and financial cost of treating these types of injuries is immense; our Glendale pedestrian accident lawyers can help you fight to secure the fair compensation you need to cover all of your related losses.
One of the most confusing factors for pedestrians in Los Angeles County is the topic of “right of way.” Some victims may dismiss their right to a personal injury claim because they were jaywalker. Others who file on their own may have an initial claim rejected from an insurance company because they were listening to music or wearing dark clothing at the time of the accident.
As mentioned earlier, for joggers and walkers, visibility can be a key factor in a pedestrian accident. This is why city officials consistently advice pedestrians to wear reflective or bright clothing, make eye contact with drivers before they cross the street, and to avoid being distracted on a run to avoid walking into traffic. However, even if you fail to follow these guidelines, that does not mean you are 100% liable for your actions.
In California civil courts, compensation is calculated based on pure comparative negligence laws. These laws dictate that multiple parties may share some of the fault in an accident and compensation may be limited based on the percentage of fault each party has. For example, if you were jaywalking across Colorado Street and were struck by an oncoming truck, the jury may find you 35% for your injuries because you were not in a crosswalk.
However, the driver would still be liable for not stopping, slowing down, or being distracted. As such, if you are awarded compensation, you would only receive 65% of the original amount. Unlike other states, California courts do not have a cap on fault and if you are even 99% at fault for an accident, you can still receive compensation.
Negligence laws only come into play if your case goes to trial. During negotiations, insurance companies may try to scare victims by forcing the blame on them and stating that a jury will find them at fault for an accident. But even you were jaywalking or wearing dark clothing during a run, that does not mean you cannot pursue compensation.
When preparing a personal injury claim, hard evidence is invaluable to proving a driver was fault in a pedestrian accident. The initial pieces of evidence in most accidents will be a police report, your medical report, and your recollection of events, but there are other types of evidence that may be useful, including:
- Traffic camera or Go Pro footage
- Photos from the scene of the accident
- Social media or cell phone activity of the driver at the time of the accident
- Paint from the car that rubbed off on your clothing
- Dents or blood on the vehicle from where it hit you
- Driving records that show a history of traffic violations
- Local traffic laws and signs, such as speed limits and crosswalk placements
All of this can be utilized by a skilled attorney to demonstrate that the driver was at fault in a pedestrian-vehicle collision. But to ensure every detail is accounted for and you receive fair representation during negotiations, you need the legal guidance of an experienced law firm.
At Aghabegian & Associates, PC, we employ a methodical approach to building your injury case:
- Often, our team will conduct an independent investigation at the scene of the accident, collecting evidence and working to determine how the accident occurred.
- In many cases, our attorneys work with experts and specialists in order to uncover the facts involved in the accident, as well as who is liable for your injuries.
- Our team can work with you to help you get the critical medical treatment you need and determine the expected lifetime cost of such treatment.
- We remain your dedicated advocate during negotiations with the liable insurance company, as well as in the courtroom whenever necessary.
We have handled numerous pedestrian accident cases, including a case in which a 25-year-old woman suffered a devastating brain injury after being hit by a delivery truck in a marked crosswalk. The driver of the truck insisted that the woman ran into the path of his vehicle, but our investigations revealed that he had a history of failing to yield the right-of-way as required by law. Ultimately, our firm was able to not only encourage the woman to seek out proper medical treatment for her injury, allowing her to make a full recovery, but we were also able to secure a substantial settlement on her behalf.
Regardless of the complexity of your unique case, the team at Aghabegian & Associates, PC can help you navigate the legal process. We are here to answer your questions and address any concerns you may have. Reach out to us today for a free, confidential consultation.
Call (818) 507-4311 or reach us online to get started on your case.
- Safety Tips For Joggers And Bikers In Glendale
- Pedestrians | City of Glendale, CA
- California Driver Handbook - Laws and Rules of the Road
- CVC 21954(a)