As the weather warms up and more people get vaccinated, the world seems to be slowly returning to normal. People are out enjoying the sunshine, walking around, and taking advantage of being outdoors this time of year—but this also means more pedestrians and bikers on our sidewalks and streets. As we return to normalcy, it is crucial that drivers and pedestrians alike exercise the utmost caution when navigating Maine’s streets and sidewalks—and that we are respectful of the laws that keep both groups safe while sharing the road.
According to a recent news report, three pedestrians, including a one-year-old girl, were killed following a fatal accident. The Augusta Police Department reported that the accident was still under investigation, but that a driver has been identified, and the crash is still being reconstructed by Maine State Police.
Although pedestrian accidents may seem rare, they take place more frequently than you think. Based on data from the Maine Department of Transportation, 56 Maine residents were killed, and 1,292 were injured between 2006 and 2010 in pedestrian-related car accidents. In addition, pedestrian accidents in Maine appear to be on the rise. In fact, in 2019, the state saw an increase in the number of pedestrian deaths, and the Maine Bureau of Highway Safety reported that 17 people were killed that year—more than three times the number of deaths reported in 2018.
To best protect yourself from being involved in a pedestrian accident, it is crucial that you remain proactive, vigilant, and alert whether you’re crossing the street or navigating your car in a busy area with lots of walkers, runners, and bikers. The most common reason for pedestrian accidents, according to the CDC, is the lack of visibility of pedestrians to drivers.
Often, drivers fail to spot pedestrians until it is too late. The risk of being hit by a car as a pedestrian only increases at night in poorly lit areas or where the pedestrian is wearing darker clothing. Alcohol use is also a common factor in pedestrian accidents, with more than 34 percent of related fatalities involving a victim with high blood alcohol content and 15 percent involving drivers who are similarly inebriated.
Following a pedestrian accident, it is crucial that you follow certain recommended steps to best protect yourself. First, call the police immediately, if you are able. This way, that the accident is documented. Second, collect all relevant information from the driver, including their personal information and insurance details. Third, document everything that you can. This means talking to potential witnesses who may have seen the accident take place, taking pictures or video of the accident, and writing down all of the details of the crash in case the details slip your mind after the accident.
Do You Need a Maine Personal Injury Attorney?
If you or someone you know has been recently injured in a Maine pedestrian accident, contact the attorneys at Peter Thompson & Associates today. Our lawyers have represented clients in all types of personal injury claims and will work to help you effectively pursue the compensation you deserve. To schedule a free initial consultation today, contact us at 1-800-804-2004.