Pedestrian accidents happen all too often on the busy streets of Billings, Montana. Drivers racing to get to work on time, impatient motorists stuck in rush hour traffic, and those too distracted behind the wheel to pay attention to the road all cause accidents every year. Other drivers engage in reckless behaviors such as speeding through school zones, failing to yield the right of way to pedestrians in crosswalks, and drinking and driving.
When someone else’s negligence causes another’s injury, the Billings pedestrian accident attorneys at Heenan & Cook, PLLC, are here to offer experienced legal assistance.
Pedestrian Safety in Billings, Montana
Many drivers mistakenly believe they can text behind the wheel without it interfering with their driving. This harmful misconception leads to thousands of cell phone-related pedestrian accidents every year. Taking one’s eyes off the road for even a few seconds – long enough to read a text message – is like driving blindfolded. A driver cannot react to pedestrians crossing the road, children running into the street, or a crosswalk signal coming on, fast enough to avoid a collision if he or she is looking down at a phone.
At least 4,735 pedestrians were killed in traffic related accidents in 2013. The most common cause of pedestrian accidents is drivers failing to check for pedestrians in crosswalks. Driver distractions besides cell phone use include eating and drinking behind the wheel, personal grooming, and talking to passengers. In most bicycle accidents in Billings, Montana, the pedestrian will have had the right of way. The city has laws in place to protect pedestrians and other vulnerable road users. For example, pedestrians have the right of way at all marked crosswalks – at intersections or midblock.
The city of Billings, Montana has taken steps and initiatives to improve pedestrian safety, including creating pedestrian refuge islands, unique crosswalks at schools, overhead signage, and flashing beacons. Pedestrian safety is still a major concern for city planners, however, and the majority of the burden rests with drivers. Despite these laws and safety improvements, vehicles often still ignore pedestrians trying to cross. They fail to slow down, yield the right of way, and stop for pedestrians. This leads to dozens of pedestrian accidents in the city every year.
Proving Fault for a Hit and Run Pedestrian Accident
If a distracted or negligent driver caused your pedestrian accident, you bear the burden of proving the driver’s fault. With the right attorney by your side, this does not have to be difficult. At Heenan & Cook, PLLC, we have the tools and resources to help accident victims prove the negligent party’s fault. We can interview eyewitnesses, for example, and gain access to roadway footage and the driver’s phone records at the time of the accident. Our hard-working team does what it takes to secure the compensation our clients deserve after a catastrophic accident.
After an accident, the driver’s insurance company will likely contact you and offer you a hasty settlement. An insurance settlement may not be enough to fully cover your losses. In some cases, an insurance company may even deny your claim. In these situations, you need a dependable attorney to take over negotiations for you. At Heenan & Cook, PLLC, our lawyers have experience in both settlements and litigation. We excel in and out of the courtroom and will recommend the actions we believe will give you the best settlement.
You may only be able to recover for your present and future medical bills, lost wages, lost earning capacity, and pain and suffering, with a personal injury claim against the negligent driver. If this is the case, our attorneys can walk you through the claims process in Billings and answer any questions you have. To schedule your free consultation with our team, contact us online or dial (406) 839-9091.