What are the Main Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?

The unfortunate reality is that pedestrian accidents are not uncommon throughout the state of Tennessee. Pedestrians are incredibly vulnerable on or around the roadway, and any accident can lead to significant injuries for those involved. Here, we want to examine the main causes of pedestrian accidents in TN, and we hope that this information can help increase the safety of pedestrians as well as drivers on the roadway.

Understanding the Causes of Pedestrian Crashes in Tennessee

Data available from the Tennessee Department of Safety & Homeland Security shows that there were 1,473 total pedestrians involved in motor vehicle collisions across the state during the latest reporting year. Unfortunately, many of these individuals sustained severe injuries. Pedestrian accidents occur in a wide variety of ways in and around the roadways of Tennessee. Some of the most common causes include:

  • Distracted driving. As of 2019, Tennessee’s “Hands-Free Law” makes it illegal for a driver to hold a cell phone or mobile device with any body part. They are also not allowed to write, send, or read any text-based communication. Additionally, drivers cannot watch videos or movies or record or broadcast a video with a mobile device while operating a vehicle.
  • Speeding. Speeding or driving too fast for conditions remains a leading cause of traffic injuries and fatalities each year across the state of Tennessee.
  • Impaired driving. Drivers impaired by alcohol or drugs present incredible dangers on the roadways, particularly for pedestrians. Impaired driving has been a leading cause of traffic fatalities year after year in Tennessee.
  • Failing to yield the right of way. Drivers are required to yield the right of way to pedestrians in most situations though many drivers do not take the time to slow down when they should yield. This can lead to disastrous situations for pedestrians.

It is important to point out that pedestrians can also be responsible for these incidents, either totally or partially. Liability may fall onto the pedestrian if they blatantly disregarded Tennessee traffic safety laws, were impaired by alcohol or drugs, or were walking while distracted by a phone or another device when a crash occurred.

Pedestrians do not have an unlimited right of way on the roadways of Tennessee. Drivers are required to yield to pedestrians at marked or unmarked intersections as well as when pedestrians come out of an alleyway or driveway. However, when there is no crosswalk, pedestrians should yield to all traffic on the roadway and only cross when it is safe to do so.

Unfortunately, pedestrian accidents often result in severe injuries. Pedestrians have no protection from the force of a heavy vehicle slamming into them, and it is not uncommon for individuals to sustain broken or dislocated bones, traumatic brain injuries, spinal cord injuries with paralysis, crush injuries, severe lacerations, internal organ damage or internal bleeding, major scarring and disfigurement, and more.

Work With an Attorney if You Are Injured

If you or somebody you care about has been injured in a pedestrian crash caused by the actions of a negligent driver in Tennessee, reach out to an attorney as soon as possible. A skilled pedestrian accident lawyer can handle every aspect of these claims, including conducting a complete investigation in order to determine liability. Additionally, an attorney will make sure that their client is evaluated by a trusted medical professional who can not only treat their injuries but also help properly calculate total expected losses.