Here is everything you need to know about Florida pedestrian hit and runs.
Florida Hit and Run Statistics
Recently, a pedestrian was struck and killed crossing the street in northeast Miami-Dade. The accident took place at around 5:30 in the morning around the intersection of Biscayne Boulevard and Northeast 114th Street.
The victim was struck and died at the scene. The vehicle driver fled the scene and did not call 911 after the accident. This is just one example of a hit and run in Florida currently being investigated.
If the driver is at fault for a pedestrian accident, they will be liable for all damages to the pedestrian. The fault for the accident is determined by the general negligence standard.
Reports have found Florida to be one of the most dangerous states for pedestrians, averaging 2.73 pedestrian fatalities per 100,000 people. Florida cities also account for eight of the 10 top most dangerous cities for pedestrians in the country.
Pedestrian accidents often result in serious injuries because the pedestrian doesn't have any protection. This becomes even more true when the vehicle involved is a larger truck or SUV. Some of the more common injuries that result from pedestrian accidents include head and spinal cord injuries, internal injuries, pelvic injuries, bone fractures, bruising, and cuts and lacerations.
In most cases, pedestrians have the right of way over motorists. However, as a pedestrian, you need to understand when this is not the case. Understanding the laws and your rights under Florida's pedestrian laws is important for your safety and also important if you have been injured and are filing a claim for damages.
Florida Pedestrian Laws
Under Florida pedestrian laws, there is a general duty to exercise care and caution. This shows how pedestrians should behave when it comes to dealing with certain traffic situations. A pedestrian includes anyone who is "afoot." Under this category, we include walkers, runners, skateboarders, rollerskaters, and those in wheelchairs. This does not include bicyclists. As a pedestrian, you are required to follow all traffic signals unless there is a police offer present to direct traffic. If there are no pedestrian traffic signals available, you must obey the other pedestrian rules in place.
For example, if there is a sidewalk, use it. Avoid walking on the roadways. If there are no sidewalks available, a pedestrian can walk on the shoulder of the road. However, when possible, the pedestrian should be on the left side of the road facing oncoming traffic. This allows the pedestrian to see what is going on as vehicles approach so they can take steps to protect themselves from a potential impact.
Under Florida's pedestrian laws, a pedestrian cannot stand in the roadways as a vehicle is parking and cannot guard vehicles. When there are no traffic signals, but there is a marked crosswalk, an approaching vehicle must yield the right of way to the pedestrian crossing at the crosswalk.
Pedestrians should never cross an intersection diagonally, walk on a limited-access highway, or walk around signals or barriers at bridges or railroad crossings.
What Happens When There Is a Hit and Run?
According to Florida accident laws, if the driver is at fault for hitting a pedestrian, they will be liable for damages. Since Florida is a comparative negligence state, the negligence of the driver and the pedestrian will be considered when it is time to determine the percentage of fault in the accident.
If you have been involved in a pedestrian accident and it was a hit and run, it is best to consult with an experienced personal injury attorney who can help you navigate what can prove to be an overly complicated process so you get the compensation you deserve.