When learning about the unique factors of Denver pedestrian accidents, a distinguished personal injury attorney may first help you understand the legal definition of a pedestrian. As defined by Colorado Revised Statutes, Title 42, a pedestrian is any person on foot or any person that is in a wheelchair.
In Denver, pedestrian law is addressed in Colorado Revised Statutes, Vehicles, and Traffic Sections 42-4-801 through 808. It is part of the statutory scheme of the traffic laws in general. The injuries usually are more severe if one is a pedestrian being hit versus someone being hit with the protection of a vehicle around them. As a skilled pedestrian injury lawyer knows, cases might be worth more money just because the injuries are more severe.
How Often do Pedestrian Crashes Typically Occur?
Part of the unique factors of Denver pedestrian accidents is how often they occur. Pedestrian accidents often occur when children are returning home from school or at night when it is dark and difficult to see. It is common for a hit-and-run situation regarding a pedestrian accident because it is easier for the driver to get away, while a pedestrian is knocked down or injured.
Pedestrian accidents are more likely to occur in urban areas rather than rural areas, and at non-intersection areas where there may be no sidewalks or people are jaywalking. There have been some statistics that show school-age children and the elderly are the most vulnerable pedestrians when it comes to these types of accidents. A lot of pedestrian accidents occur when drivers are preoccupied on their cell phones or something else in the car, or under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
Difference Between Pedestrian and Auto Accidents
Most importantly, as a pedestrian, people are far more vulnerable to injuries or death due to the lack of protection by a vehicle, so the severity of the injuries involved in a pedestrian accident are just a different level of injury. Legally they are really no different than regular auto accidents except, obviously, pedestrians are less likely to be found comparatively negligent than another driver on the roadway just because pedestrians are owed a higher level of care by drivers.
Are Bicyclists Considered Pedestrians?
Bicyclists have to obey the laws of the roadway like drivers do. Not every single law applies to a bicycle, but definitely more so that would apply to pedestrians. Pedestrians are put on a different level when it comes to the duty of the roadway. If the person is walking with their bicycle, then they would be considered a pedestrian because they are on foot. Otherwise, they would be a bicyclist.
Common Injury Cases
Statistically, pedestrian accidents are more likely to occur during nighttime hours and when children are getting out of school; they occur more commonly in urban areas and the majority of pedestrian accidents do not happen at intersections, but at non-intersection areas where there are no sidewalks available or when pedestrians are jaywalking. Hit-and-runs, drunk-driving or driving under the influence are fairly common in pedestrian accidents. Children and elderly people are the most common pedestrians hit by motor vehicles.