Orlando Pedestrian Accidents: Top 4 Myths Debunked
Pedestrian accidents happen more often than people think. The CDC estimates that in 2017 alone, more than 5,900 pedestrians died in traffic crashes in the United States. This means that one pedestrian died after every 88 minutes in that year. Additionally, approximately 137,000 pedestrians are believed to have sustained injuries in traffic crashes in the same year. On the other hand, according to MetroPlan Orlando, in 2020, Seminole, Orange, and Osceola counties alone, recorded a total of 60 pedestrian crashes that resulted in 53 injury cases and 7 fatalities.
Unfortunately, people have spread many misconceptions that disrepute pedestrians or trivialize the seriousness of pedestrian safety issues. Based on an article published in 2017 on the Best Foot Forward’s (BFF) website, below are four common myths about pedestrians and pedestrian accidents. Best Foot Forward is a coalition for pedestrian safety in the U.S. with three counties, eleven municipalities, twelve law enforcement agencies, and thirty-six total community partners.
Myth #1: Fewer Individuals Walking Equals Fewer Pedestrian Deaths
Even though most Orlando residents travel by car, it is not true that fewer people walking means fewer pedestrian deaths. Unfortunately, when pedestrians aren’t a common site, drivers don’t watch out for them as they should, and with few people walking, drivers tend not to be mindful when approaching crosswalks or turning into cross streets.
Myth #2: Pedestrians Are Usually Elderly People
The truth is that even young individuals walk too. In fact, according to research, millennials are less car-focused than older Americans. Young Americans prefer to take transit, bike, and walk more. However, it is true that nationwide, elderly individuals in pedestrian accidents are more likely to die than younger individuals. Older people generally succumb to injuries more frequently than younger people.
Myth #3: If a Person Jaywalking Gets Hit, They Are Entirely at Fault
Jaywalking is when an individual walks on or crosses a road without a designated crosswalk or marked intersection. It is also when a person walks in a signalized crosswalk in disregard of traffic rules. For example, jaywalking occurs when a person walks when the signal says, “Don’t walk.” However, according to Florida statute 316.130, a pedestrian can cross a roadway at a point where there is no crosswalk as long as they yield to vehicles on the road. As such, both pedestrians and drivers can be held liable for pedestrian accidents that involve jaywalking. When determining fault in pedestrian accidents, Florida courts use the comparative negligence principle.
Myth #4: Tourists Are the Leading Cause of Pedestrian Accidents
This is false. The truth is that both locals and tourists are prone to collisions with cars. Also, the claim that tourist motorists are a threat to pedestrians is unsubstantiated. Both a local and tourist driver can end up hitting a pedestrian.
Contact an Orlando Personal Injury Attorney Today
If you recently sustained severe injuries in a pedestrian accident, you need to contact a qualified personal injury attorney. An attorney can evaluate your case and ensure your rights are protected. At The Pendas Law Firm, our Orlando personal injury attorneys can help ensure that an at-fault party takes responsibility for their actions. We can help you obtain compensation even if you are partly to blame for your accident since Florida is a pure comparative negligence state. Contact us today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.
The Pendas Law Firm also represents clients in the Fort Lauderdale, Fort Myers, Ocala, Tampa, Jacksonville, Bradenton, Daytona Beach, West Palm Beach, and Miami areas.