Pedestrian Accident Lawyers in Denver, Colorado
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Whether for health purposes or for bettering the environment, more and more people today are choosing to walk to their destinations rather than drive or take the bus. Due to the increase in foot traffic, pedestrian accidents are on the rise in the United States. Being hit by a car, motorcycle, or bike while you’re out walking can be a harrowing experience. The injuries from such accidents can be severe and may even lead to wrongful death. You may wish to pursue a claim against the person who hit you. Before you file a claim, though, you should meet with one of our Denver pedestrian accident lawyers to discuss your case and decide how best to proceed with your claim.
If you or a loved one have suffered from an injury after an accident in Denver, contact Zinda Law Group today. Just dial (800) 863-5312 for a 100% free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers.
PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT statistics
The Colorado Department of Transportation publishes statistics every year regarding the number of accidents that occur in the state and the number of fatalities from these accidents. In 2021, there were 94 pedestrian deaths because of traffic accidents, which made up 13.9% of all fatalities from traffic accidents. As of April 1, 2022, the number of pedestrian deaths was 17.
Most pedestrian accidents resulting in severe bodily injuries occur on Fridays in Denver, and most often in the months of September through January. In 2021, 76 traffic accidents resulted in serious bodily injury to pedestrians. As of April 1, 2022, the number of pedestrians that have suffered serious bodily injuries from traffic accidents is 2.
What to do if you have been hit by a vehicle
What you do immediately after being struck by a vehicle is incredibly important not just for your claim, but for your continued overall health and recovery. It is important to follow the necessary steps to ensure that you get the maximum compensation that you are entitled to. Secondly, completing each step will also help you recover from your injuries more quickly and get back to your life.
1. Call 911 Immediately
After any car accident, you should call the local authorities or police immediately. This is a very important step when you are a pedestrian, as you are more vulnerable to injury in this situation.
The Denver police will investigate the scene of your accident and write up a report to document their findings. You can request a copy of this report in the days and weeks after your accident.
2. Take Care of Medical Needs
When you call 911, be sure to let the operator know if you or others are injured. The operator will ensure an ambulance is sent to the scene to help treat any severe or minor injuries sustained.
If you are not treated at the scene, seek medical attention immediately after the accident. Then, after each treatment, be sure to get copies of the documentation of your treatment.
3. Gather Information and Document the Scene
In the event that your injuries are minor or do not require immediate medical attention, try to gather as much information as you can before leaving the scene of your accident. Get the contact and insurance information of the person who hit you, first. Next, take pictures of the scene. If there were any witnesses, try to get their contact information and a statement, or encourage them to give a statement to the police.
Finally, try to write down any information you can regarding the accident, such as if there was a crosswalk, a stop sign, or a traffic light. Was there a “Walk” or “Don’t Walk” signal at the time you were crossing the street?
These details will be important to both you and your Denver pedestrian accident attorney later. He or she will use these details to investigate your claim and help you hold responsible those who are at-fault for your injuries.
4. Call Experienced Denver Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
After calling the police and attending to your injuries, try to speak with a Denver pedestrian accident attorney as soon as possible. An experienced injury attorney has the training and resources to help you hold the driver responsible for your injuries.
Contact a DENVER PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT LAWYER As Soon As Possible
An experienced personal injury lawyer who has handled many similar cases will be able to provide sound advice for your case and walk you through your next steps. Finding the right personal injury attorney in Denver may seem difficult, but there are plenty of resources available to make the process easier. For example, you can ask friends or family for recommendations, or even conduct a simple internet search using terms such as “personal injury lawyer Denver,” “Denver injury attorney,” or “Denver personal injury lawyer.”
Another option when looking for reliable legal representation is to look for an attorney through the American Bar Association’s online directory. You can also find a lawyer through the Colorado Bar Association’s website, where you can search for lawyers in your area. Finally, you can check the Denver Bar Association’s website for more referrals.
Choose a personal injury attorney who has the experience and skill needed to handle your case, and a track record of success in pursing personal injury claims. Zinda Law Group’s personal injury lawyers have experience with personal injury claims involving pedestrian accidents and an outstanding record of success in handling matters like these for our clients.
When pedestrians are struck while walking down the street, there may be criminal penalties involved alongside your civil claim. For example, if the driver who hit you was drunk, DWAI and DUI law violations typically involve criminal penalties, in addition to civil liabilities. An experienced personal injury lawyer will be able to navigate these overlapping issues and better assist you in receiving the compensation you deserve.
Colorado Statute of Limitations
If you wish to pursue a personal injury claim against a driver, contact an injury attorney right away, for there are time constraints, such as statutes of limitations, involved in civil cases that determine how long you will have to file your claim. In Colorado, the statute of limitations for a personal injury case involving a motor vehicle-related accident is three years. This means that you would have three years from the date of your accident to file a claim.
If you were struck by a bicyclist or someone on a skateboard, the statute of limitations is two years. If you attempt to file your claim beyond the two- or three-year limit, your claim is barred. This means that it is not allowed and will be dismissed.
If you lose a loved one in a pedestrian accident, there is a two-year statute of limitations for a wrongful death claim that begins to run on the day of your loved one’s death. You will have two years from that point to file a claim, and if you fail to do so it is barred. An experienced Denver pedestrian accident attorney will be able to help you determine when you will need to file, and if you are subject to any of the exceptions that exist to “toll” or delay the statute of limitations.
WHO CAN BE HELD LIABLE AND HOW?
Who can be held liable for your accident depends on the specific facts of your case. The driver can be held responsible if they are found to be negligent, but the pedestrian can be found to have acted negligently as well. If the pedestrian is found to have also been at fault, this can result in a reduction of damages that can be recovered, or a prevention of recovery altogether.
The Driver’s Negligence
A driver or motorist can be held responsible for your injuries in a civil court if the four elements of a negligence claim are met: duty, breach of that duty, causation, and damages.
1. The Duty Owed to Others
A lawyer must prove that the driver owed you a duty, which is typically to act as a reasonably prudent person would under circumstances similar to those under which your accident occurred.
2. Breach of Duty
Once duty has been established, your lawyer will work to prove that the driver breached that duty by driving in a manner that deviated from this standard, such as by speeding or driving drunk.
3. Direct Causation of Injury
Next, a lawyer must show that, but-for the driver, your injuries would not have occurred.
4. Proven Damages
Damages are proved by showing you suffered an injury, whether physical or financial (such as medical bills) from the accident.
If all four of these elements are met, a driver will be held liable for your injuries, and you may recover the monetary costs of the accident from them. Typically, the first two elements (duty and breach) can be proven by showing the driver violated a law which was meant to protect a class of persons which you belong to.
This theory is called Negligence per se. An example of a situation where a driver can be found negligent per se is when someone drives drunk in violation of the state’s DWAI and DUI laws.
Where the Accident Occurred Affects Liability
The location of your accident, the presence of a crosswalk, and what signals or crosswalk signs were displayed at the time of the accident are all variables that can significantly change the liability of you or the driver for the accident. For example, if you were walking in a crosswalk with a “Walk” signal, then liability will probably be placed mostly or fully on the driver who hit you. If you stepped off the curb unexpectedly and right in front of an approaching vehicle where there was no crosswalk, then you could probably be found as the liable party.
The Pedestrian’s Responsibility
Pedestrians are expected to know and adhere to the rules of the road just as drivers are. Colorado Law § 42-4-802 covers when a pedestrian has the right-of-way when walking along the road or looking to cross the street.
The statute gives guidance for driver and pedestrian behavior in a variety of scenarios discussed below. Failure to abide by these standards can result in either liability for the driver or liability for the pedestrian, and therefore the possibility of a reduction in damages that can be recovered on a claim.
Colorado Revised Statute § 42-4-802
Under this statute, drivers must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians when a pedestrian is entering the roadway within a crosswalk without dedicated traffic signals. Drivers can enter the crosswalk to continue driving if the pedestrian is on the other side of the crosswalk, but not if they are so close that they would feel endangered by the vehicle’s passing.
The statute further states that pedestrians must yield the right-of-way to vehicles that are legally occupying and moving through lanes of traffic. A pedestrian cannot “suddenly leave a curb” to place themselves into a vehicle’s immediate path. Drivers cannot attempt to pass a vehicle that has stopped to allow a pedestrian to cross the street, even if it is not clear if the pedestrian had the right-of-way to enter the street in the first place.
The statute also covers scenarios involving “Walk” and “Don’t Walk” signals. For starters, drivers and pedestrians must adhere to “Walk” and “Don’t Walk” traffic signals as expected. Drivers must yield the right-of-way to pedestrians with a “Walk Signal” and to those who are in the crosswalk when the “Don’t Walk” signal begins to flash.
In Colorado, pedestrians must yield the right-of-way and not enter a crosswalk when the “Don’t Walk” signal is solid or flashing. Denver pedestrians can also cross from the corner of an intersection to any other corner when a “Walk” signal is presented and traffic is halted in all directions.
How to Prevent a pedestrian Accident in Denver
For pedestrians, there are steps you can take to minimize your risk of being struck by a motorist or bicyclist while you are out on a walk. The following is a list of actions pedestrians can take to keep themselves safe:
- Cross in marked crosswalks and at intersections.
- Use pedestrian pushbuttons and WAIT for signals to cross.
- Before crossing, look left, right, then left again, and over your shoulder for turning vehicles.
- Use sidewalks. If there are none, walk facing traffic so you see vehicles, and drivers see you.
- Pay attention! Don’t text while crossing!
- Make eye contact with drivers so they see you.
- Stay visible after dark and in bad weather with light-colored or reflective clothing.
- Don’t step suddenly in front of traffic, remember that buses and trucks take even longer to stop than other vehicles.
- Watch out for vehicles backing out of parking spaces and driveways.
How Zinda LAW GROUP Denver PEDESTRIAN ACCIDENT LAWYERS Can HELP YOU
Suffering from an injury or losing a loved one after a pedestrian accident can be a source of immense emotional and financial strain on you and your family. We hope you are getting as much help and support as you can immediately following your or your loved one’s injury.
Zinda Law Group knows that you must recover financially as well as physically and emotionally. An experienced Denver pedestrian accident attorney at Zinda Law Group can assist you with recovering the costs associated with your or your loved one’s injury and recovery. Every bit of help makes a difference!
Our experienced personal injury lawyers will guide you through the often-complex legal system to help file your claim and ensure you receive the maximum compensation you are entitled to. We will take care of the legal work so you can focus on yourself and your family during this time of recovery.
If we do not win your case, you will not pay any fees. This is our No Win, No Fee Guarantee.
If you or a loved one has suffered from an injury after a pedestrian-involved Denver car accident, call Zinda Law Group today. We are easy to reach at (800) 863-5312, so call and schedule your free consultation with one of our personal injury lawyers.
Meetings with attorneys are available by appointment only.