Have you ever brought an out-of-town friend to the city and watched in delight as they nervously cross the street, jumping at every car horn and yellow taxi that nearly brushes them at each intersection? As New Jersey residents, we are conditioned to be fearless when walking, but unfortunately, that invincibility can lead to serious accidents between pedestrians and vehicles.

While we may be brave pedestrians, each of us has also probably had our heart skip a beat when a pedestrian darts into a busy intersection in front of our own bumper. One of the greatest myths that New Yorkers and New Jersey residents love to believe is that when a pedestrian and car collide, it is always the driver’s fault—a myth that has led to many serious cases being battled out in court.

Do Pedestrians Truly Always Have the Right of Way?

When pedestrians are in a crosswalk and have been given the signal to walk, it is true that pedestrians have the right of way over vehicles trying to turn left or right onto the street they are crossing. Drivers must be vigilant not only to their own rules (such as speed limits and intersection right of way), but also of the pedestrians that share the road beside them.

The nature of pedestrian accidents is such that the driver is often found at fault, whether it was due to distraction, running a stop sign or red light, or speed. Of course, there are several pedestrian accidents that are the result of negligence on the part of the pedestrian, including:

  • Jaywalking
  • Intoxication
  • Crossing against a signal

After any accident, whether you are the driver or pedestrian, it is critical to report your accident to the police to get an official record of what occurred.

If You Have Been Involved in a Pedestrian Accident, You Need an Attorney

Just because a pedestrian was acting negligently before an accident does not mean that the driver will not be scrutinized. Many people assume that the driver will always be at fault, regardless of the circumstances behind the accident. As a pedestrian, the driver’s attorney will work hard to prove that, but for your negligence, the crash would not have occurred. On either side of the equation, you will need a tough, experienced attorney in your corner.

If you have been involved in a pedestrian accident that was not your fault, whether you were the driver or pedestrian, get the legal help you need now. Call us today to schedule your free consultation, and make sure that justice is served.

Manfred Ricciardelli
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Morristown Workers' Compensation Lawyer