A pedestrian on East Mulberry Street, not far from Hwy 281, was struck by a car in some unusual circumstances on the night of May 14. The man had stopped to “toy with” a 6-foot long snake in the roadway, which somewhat understandably diverted his attention. He was struck by a pickup, sustaining minor injuries, declining any hospitalization. As of this writing, it is unknown whether or not the pickup driver will face charges, but it does bring up the timely question of pedestrian responsibility in these types of situations. If you are struck by a car while walking, you may be entitled to compensation for your injuries, though the issue of whether or not you are at fault will have to be weighed as well.
Pedestrian Accidents Are Common
Texas ranks in the top ten states for dangerous pedestrian environments, though there are many different reasons why. The state has high-speed limits, and a lack of crosswalks and lights, especially in more rural areas. Alcohol and abuse of other substances also play a role, both on the part of drivers and pedestrians. Distracted driving is also common in Texas; whether due to electronics, distracting passengers in the car, or some other issue, Texas drivers are less likely to pay enough attention to the road.
Sometimes, people like the East Mulberry Street pedestrian may downplay any injuries they may have sustained in a pedestrian accident, though this is never a good thing – it is not at all uncommon for injuries to manifest themselves days or even weeks after an accident. This is especially true for injuries to the soft tissue, such as whiplash, as soft tissue is so malleable that it may not be painful or show any unusual symptoms right away.
The Question of Foreseeability
If you want to bring suit against the driver who struck you as a pedestrian, doing so is fairly straightforward. You must be able to show that the driver breached the duty to exercise reasonable care and that their breach of duty was the direct cause of the harm you suffered, without any other intervening cause in between. You must also be able to show that you actually suffered tangible harm. If you can establish these facts, you have a chance to recover, even if you were partially at fault.
However, there is one factor that has to be addressed in the context of trying to prove negligence, and that is a concept called foreseeability. In order to establish the ‘cause’ element of negligence, it must be foreseeable to an ordinary person that acting in that manner might be negligent and lead to harm. In the case of the East Mulberry Street accident, it might be argued that it was not foreseeable that a large snake might show up in the roadway, causing the pedestrian to have their attention diverted. Be aware of potential foreseeability issues in your own case.
Contact a New Braunfels Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
While law enforcement has not stated whether or not the pickup driver will face charges – or the condition of the snake – matters might be even more complex in your case. You need an attorney on your side who will help guide you through the process. The skilled New Braunfels pedestrian accident attorneys at the Bettersworth Law Firm are ready to try and assist you with your case. Contact our office today at 888-392-0039 to schedule a free consultation.