Chicago Pedestrian Accident Attorney
Chicago Pedestrian Accidents Lawyer Here for You
If you or a family member was seriously injured or killed in a Chicago accident, contact our office today for a free review of your legal rights and options for recovery. All of our pedestrian accident cases are handled on a contingency fee basis where there is never a fee charged unless we win a settlement for you.
Pedestrians Most Vulnerable for Serious Injuries and Accidents in Chicago :: Chicago Pedestrian Accident Attorney :: Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC. Being a pedestrian in the Chicago Metropolitan area continues to be a dangerous event both day and night. This is because pedestrians continue to be the most vulnerable individuals along Northeast Illinois roadways, freeways and side streets. Often times, people are injured or killed from distracted drivers, even when following safety rules and using market crosswalks. Without the protection of seat belts and airbags available in a car or truck, people are extremely unprotected along the roadway. The impact of a heavy large vehicle often causes severe injuries to the individual or death.
Significant Injuries & Fatalities Resulting from Pedestrian Crashes
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 130,000 pedestrians in the United States received medical attention in emergency rooms for crash-related injuries in 2017. During the same year, 6,476 people were killed in incidents involving vehicles.
Closer to home, the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT) reported that 5,006 people were injured and 167 people were killed across Illinois in 2018 in pedestrian accidents. In breaking these statistics down further, urban areas such as Chicago, were particularly dangerous accounting for over 77% of the state's pedestrian fatalities and injuries.
Injuries Handled by our Chicago Pedestrian Accident LawyersIn a study conducted by the Division of Trauma in Los Angeles, CA, more than 5,800 accidents were reviewed, and the study found that the most common type of severe injury to pedestrians was head injuries, followed by injuries to the chest, abdomen, and extremities. The study linked both the vehicle speed and the age of the individual to the severity of the injury and the survival outcome.
- At 20 mph, the chance of fatality is 5%.
- At 30 mph, the chance of death increases to 45%.
- At 40 mph, the chance of fatal injuries skyrockets to 85%.
- Fractures: Even at relatively low-speeds, the force of vehicle colliding with a person can result in a fracture to legs and arm due to the impact as well as if the person is pushed to the pavement.
- Brain injuries: Traumatic brain injuries (TBI's) are an unfortunate result of pedestrian trauma and frequently result in lifelong disability. Negligent drivers can be held accountable for rehabilitation, medical bills and medical treatments related to a TBI sustained in a collision with an individual.
- De-gloving injuries: Despite being relatively uncommon de-gloving injuries occur when a vehicle runs over a person on a street or sidewalk and shear skin and muscle away from the bone. De-gloving injuries require extensive medical treatments and likely require extensive orthopedic and plastic surgeries to repair.
- Injuries to internal organs: Internal injuries to organs may not be readily apparent after a collision, but may be diagnosed by emergency room physicians via an MRI or CT scans. Possible internal injuries may be related to internal bleeding or blunt force trauma to the liver, lungs, kidneys or even the heart.
- Joint injuries: Most auto crash injuries to pedestrians occur to the lower extremities including the legs or hips when the bumper of a vehicle comes into contact with the person. The impact can damage the medial and lateral ligaments, the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), posterior cruciate ligament (PCL), medial collateral ligament (MCL) and lateral collateral ligament (LCL). Unfortunately, many of these injuries require surgical intervention and physical therapy rehabilitation.
- Paralysis: The impact from the colliding vehicle can cause damage to the spinal cord. In some situations, and depending on the location of the damage to the spinal cord, paralysis or quadriplegia can result. The most common sources of paralysis are injury to injuries to the cervical spine at levels C3-5, the thoracic spine at (T9-12) and lumbar spine at (L4-5).
- Fatalities: The family of a person killed in an accident, may be able to pursue a wrongful death lawsuit against the individual or company the driver was employed by. A wrongful death lawsuit can provide financial support for lost wages and the loss of emotional support.
Why Chicago Pedestrians are at a Heightened Risk of Injury
The majority of pedestrian accidents happen in urban areas, like Chicago. In fact, the National Highway Traffic Administration estimates that 85.7% of non-fatal pedestrian accidents happen in cities.
In a study released by the Chicago Department of Transportation in 2017, the following types of driver behavior were shown to be behind a substantial number of incidents involving pedestrian injury within the Chicago area.
- Drivers Failing to Yield: 48% of these accidents were attributed to drivers not yielding. This was the most common cause of accidents in Chicago.
- Hit-and-Run Collisions: 33% of all of the accidents studied were hit-and-run. These also made up 40% of the fatal accidents, double the national average. There was an average of two hit-and-run accidents per day over a five-year period in Chicago.
- Turning Vehicles: More than 50% of the accidents involved a turning vehicle. Turning left accounted for more than double the turning accidents compared to turning right.
- Distracted Drivers: As more driver's use cell phones behind the wheel, the number of distracted driving accidents continues to escalate.
As personal injury attorneys who have extensive experience with Chicago motor vehicle injury and fatality cases, we have also seen an increase in cases involving distracted drivers and alcohol-impaired drivers.
Compensation Available in Pedestrian Injury and Fatality Cases
- Medical Expenses: All past and future medical expenses related to your injuries may be included, such as costs for an ambulance, doctors, surgery, hospitalization, physical therapy, MRIs, X-rays, injections, medications, and medical devices.
- Lost Wages: You can recover past and future lost wages if your injuries prevent you from returning to the employment you were engaged in prior to the accident.
- Pain and Suffering: All of the pain related to physical injuries and medical procedures is compensable.
- Disability: Financial recovery may be obtained for an injured person’s loss of the ability to participate in activities they enjoyed prior to the incident.
Chicago Pedestrian Accident Law FAQs
What Illinois Laws Protect Pedestrians?
- When must drivers stop for pedestrians? Drivers must stop when people are in crosswalks or on school days when they enter/leave a school zone. Drivers must also stop if doing so would prevent further injury or accident. 625 ILCS 5/11-801
- When must drivers yield to pedestrians? Drivers must yield when turning at a red light or intersection; when people are on their side of the road; when foot traffic has the right of way; when people are already in the crosswalk when the light turns green; when people are leaving a driveway, alley, private road, or building; and when yielding would prevent an injury or accident. 625 ILCS 5/Ch. 11 Art. IX
- When are vehicles allowed on the road? Drivers can only use Illinois roads to safely enter, merge, start, or stop with traffic. All unauthorized use of roads, highways, shoulders, alleys, or other avenues is strictly prohibited. 625 ILCS 5/11-709.1
- How must drivers operate their vehicles? In Illinois, drivers must use all due care in order to avoid an accident with people and other vehicles on the roadway. It is incumbent on them to operate their cars or sound their horns in order to prevent a collision. 625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1
Does Illinois Law Protect Adults and Children in Crosswalks?
Illinois statute requires motorists to "exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian" (625 ILCS 5/11-1003.1). The state legislature has further refined the responsibilities of drivers when they encounter a person at a marked crosswalk, where they must yield to the individual. This means they must slow, stop completely, or do whatever necessary to allow the person to go through the crosswalk.
- When traffic control signals are not in place or in operation, the driver of a vehicle shall stop and yield the right-of-way to a pedestrian crossing the roadway within a crosswalk when the person is upon the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling, or when the individual is approaching so closely from the opposite half of the roadway as to be in danger.
- No pedestrian shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk or run into the path of a moving vehicle that is so close as to constitute an immediate hazard.
- Paragraph (a) shall not apply under the condition stated in … (b).
- Whenever any vehicle is stopped at a marked crosswalk or at any unmarked crosswalk at an intersection to permit an individual to cross the roadway, the driver of any other vehicle approaching from the rear shall not overtake and pass such stopped vehicle.
- Whenever stop signs or flashing red signals are in place at an intersection or at a plainly marked crosswalk between intersections, drivers shall yield right-of-way to people as set forth in Section 11-904 of this Chapter.
(625 ILCS 5/11-1002)There are other ways in which Illinois law protects pedestrians, but this is the overall framework: Drivers must exercise care when walkers are present and yield to them where appropriate.
Can I File a Lawsuit on Behalf of my Child if They Were hit by a Vehicle?
Yes, parents can sue on behalf of their child for injuries related to them getting struck by a vehicle. Consider Illinois' rules on negligence to see if you have a case. To sue for negligence, you must show that the driver acted unreasonably and caused your child's damages. 720 ILCS 5/4-7. If that person shows that your son or daughter was responsible for the crash, then you might lose. 735 ILCS 5/2-1116. However, children under five generally cannot be held liable. If you can successfully demonstrate these points, then you will be able to recover for all your child's economic and non-economic damages. Also, remember to bring the action within the appropriate statute of limitations. 735 ILCS 5/13-212.
Can I File a Lawsuit if my Family Member was Killed?
How Long do I Have to File a Pedestrian Accident Lawsuit in Illinois?
What are Some Examples of Illinois Pedestrian Accident Settlements?
What can I do if the Driver who Hit Me did not Have Auto Insurance?
If you are injured in an accident with a driver who did not have auto insurance, you may make an un-insured motorist (UM) claim under your personal automobile insurance policy. When pursuing a UM claim, you can recover the same elements of damages as the law would allow you to recover as if you were pursuing a case against the at-fault party. There are some procedural requirements with un-insured motorist claims involving injured pedestrians, so it is advisable to have a lawyer review your auto insurance policy to determine the best course of action.
If I was Partially at Fault for my Pedestrian Accident, can I Still Pursue a Claim for my Injuries?
Can I Recover Compensation for Future Medical Treatments?
How can a Chicago Injury Attorney Protect my Case?
Our attorneys regularly take the following steps on behalf of our pedestrian accident cases.
- Ordering medical records and bills
- Obtaining witness statements
- Consulting with treating physicians to appreciate the significance of the injury
- Calculating wage loss information related to injuries
- Seeking court intervention in order to secure video footage of an incident
- Photographing the scene of an accident
- Communicating with insurance adjusters for drivers involved
- Communicating with medical insurance companies to seek subrogation payment from a case
If you have suffered a pedestrian-related traffic injury in Chicago, you might have legal rights to recover damages for the injuries sustained. The Chicago attorneys at Rosenfeld Injury Lawyers LLC have considerable experience in all types of personal injury matters, including car accidents, hit-and-run drivers, and collisions with commercial vehicles. Our legal consultations are free, and a pedestrian accident lawyer will give you a candid evaluation of your case. While we are headquartered in Chicago, our office serves all of Illinois in serious injury and fatality lawsuits, and we only get paid when your case is resolved.
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