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Pedestrian Versus Motor Vehicle Accidents


With warmer temperatures around the corner, pedestrians will be more inclined to walk rather than be stuck in a vehicle or public transportation. However, with increased numbers or pedestrians comes the increased risk of pedestrian accidents. When a motor vehicle collides with a pedestrian, the consequences are more often than not catastrophic.

Frequency of Pedestrian Accidents

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), on average a pedestrian is killed every one-and-a-half hour in traffic accidents throughout the United States. In 2018, (the most recent year the accident data was released) there were an estimated 6,227 pedestrians killed in traffic accidents. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, this was the highest number in three decades.

Eighty (80) percent of these pedestrian fatalities occur in urban areas. Illinois is ranked ninth (9) among all the states in the number of pedestrian fatalities in 2018 (the most recent year the accident data was released). That is a nineteen (19) percent increase from 2017. Pedestrian injuries are an undeniable problem for people living in Chicago and across the State of Illinois.

Most pedestrian accidents occur on sidewalks, marked crosswalks, and in intersections controlled by traffic signals and signs. Because the pedestrian is where they are supposed to be and following due care, it is more often than not that the motorist is at fault. The cause can be driver’s negligence in using care or yielding to the pedestrian, or because they were distracted with a mobile device.

Common Questions Victims of Pedestrian Accidents Have

If an individual suffers from a pedestrian injury in Chicago, Illinois, they have legal rights to recover damages for their sustained injuries under the laws of the Motor Vehicle Code. The attorneys at Sherwood Law Group acknowledge that most pedestrian accidents are traumatic events and impact all aspects of the victim’s life. While we have extensive experience with personal injury cases, we know that it is a new situation for the victim, and thus they may have several common questions related to their accident.

  1. How long can I wait to file a lawsuit after my accident?
The sooner you seek representation the better to preserve evidence and ensure proper care of the file. Sherwood Law Group recommends reaching out to qualified attorneys immediately after your accident. In Illinois, injured pedestrians have two (2) years to file a lawsuit for their sustained injuries. This two (2) year statute of limitations prevents injured parties from filing cases that occurred a long time ago and would make it difficult to determine the truth of the matter.

  1. What can I do if my family member was killed in a pedestrian accident?
A family member can file a wrongful death lawsuit for their deceased family member following a pedestrian fatality. The decedent’s immediate family (spouses, parents, children) can pursue a death claim for damages including medical and burial expenses, lost financial support, as well as loss of companionship.

  1. What compensation am I entitled to?
In Illinois, a victim of a pedestrian accident can recover compensation for both economic and non-economic damages that relate to their accident. Economic damages include any and all medical expenses, future medical care and costs, lost income, as well as loss of future earning capacity. Non-economic damages, on the other hand, include pain and suffering, possible bodily disfigurement, and emotional distress. Depending on the circumstances of the accident, some victims may be able to collect punitive damages if the defendant’s conduct was malicious, wanton, fraudulent, or illustrated a reckless indifference to victim’s safety. A personal injury lawsuit that would be liable for punitive damages include drunk driving or hit-and-run accidents.

What Should I Do if I am Involved in a Pedestrian Accident?

The first step to ensure victims who are injured immediate safety is to seek emergency or non-emergency medical treatment depending on the severity of your injuries. This is crucial to seek immediate attention and medical care if you are injured as a result of the accident. Due to the adrenaline rush, a victim may not be aware of the severity of their sustained injuries. Only a prompt doctor diagnosis will reveal the true extent of the injuries.

Once the victim is examined by a doctor and is safe, they should speak with an experienced personal injury attorney. Speaking with a qualified lawyer will give the victim the legal resources needed to pursue recovery. Because personal injury cases can be complicated and time-extensive, personal injury lawyers can ease the stress for the victim by walking them through the process.

The personal injury attorneys at Sherwood Law Group have considerable experience in all types of injury matters, such as: motor vehicle collisions, hit-and-run drivers, and accidents with commercial vehicles. Our attorneys have seen a huge range of injuries from these aforementioned accidents, including bone fractures, spinal cord injuries, and other traumatic injuries that leave the victim with severe, life-altering disabilities. We offer every potential client a free initial case consultation and accept all cases on contingency. This postpones the payment until we resolve the case. If you or someone you know has been injured in a pedestrian accident, call us at 312.627.1650 or email us at Our experienced personal injury lawyers will help you to determine if the accident was the fault of a negligent driver. We are here to help pedestrian accident victims get the compensation they deserve for their injuries.  
Categories: personal injury