Pedestrians

5 Tips for Keeping Children Safe Around Cars

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I was reminded of the need to keep our children safe around our houses and at school from cars the other day when a young child was struck and nearly killed by a car. The child was playing just outside their house when he dashed into the street for a ball and was struck by a car. There are so many things we need to do to keep our children safe. Car accidents injuries to children are the worst. Here are some tips to keep your child safe around streets.

Teach your child about the dangers of streets and cars

Children should learn to fear streets. This is not an overreaction or an overstatement. This is the truth and one of the only ways to keep them out of the street. Young children like to play near streets but you should teach them that they should not. Teaching them about the dangers of cars and what it can do to people who are hit by cars is a hard subject but it has to be taught to them as early as they can comprehend speech.

Never allow your child to enter the street without you or an adult holding their hand

One of the ways to do this is to teach them that they are never allowed to cross or enter the street without you or an adult holding their hand. Tell them that this is very important to you and your family. Tell them that they will be in big trouble if they are caught doing this and will lose all outdoor privileges if they do. Regularly walking around and holding your child’s hand can reinforce the need to always hold your hand while walking across streets. They realize it is a privilege to walk across the street and dangerous so they need you to reinforce this by always holding their hand when crossing streets.

Do not allow children to play near streets

Children playing near streets creates an unnecessary opportunity for the child to be in danger with cars. Whether it is a ball rolling out into the street or the ice cream truck, you should not allow the opportunity for a child to run into the street. Only allow children at your house to play inside or in the back yard, assuming your yard is fenced in and away from a street. Allowing them to play near a street should be avoided at all costs.

Teach children to wait for you at the playground and not on the side of the street

Children who wait for parents near the street to be picked up after school are putting themselves in another unnecessary risk situation. It may take more effort on your part to park the car and walk to the child on the playground or after school spot, but it is well worth keeping them safe.

Children that are young may run to you or a family member’s car when they see you because they are excited to see you so do not let them take this risk. Arrange with your child for a meeting place where you will get out of your car and come to them. That way they can walk hand in hand to your car across a street if necessary.

Meeting them on the playground can add extra play time and fresh air – perfect for children and adults as well. It can be a chance for you to wind down from work and relax or get some exercise.

If your child is playing outside or near a gate to get outside, always monitor them

Children like to find ways to push the boundaries of parents. It may be difficult but you should monitor your children regularly when they are playing outside or near areas where they could get outside to a street with cars. Even if your spouse is outside and they want to go find them, someone should always have an eye on the child so they do not get into the street or behind your spouse’s car when they are back up.

Andrew Cherin5 Tips for Keeping Children Safe Around Cars
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Seattle Passenger Car Accident Injury Case

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If you have been injured in a car accident while riding as a passenger in Seattle, you need to find a Seattle passenger car accident injury lawyer. A Seattle personal injury lawyer will be able to help you maximize your recovery from the possible people that have caused your injury. Passengers have a lot of options if injured in a car accident as they often are allowed to recover from the driver of the car if the driver caused the car accident by any bit.

Seattle Passengers Injured in Car Accidents Have Many Options For Medical Payments

People who are injured as a passenger often are afforded the ability to use the driver’s personal injury protection car insurance coverage. This is a no fault option that is available to pay for your medical bills right away. Without PIP you would be forced to use your medical insurance to pay for medical bills now because the at fault part’s insurance will not cover your medical bills until you settle with them. PIP insurance can pay for your hospital bills, chiropractic appointments, physical therapy, massage, surgeries, and even for your lost wages. Most people only have $10,000 PIP policies but possibly more if they paid for extra coverage.

In addition to using the driver of your car’s PIP insurance, you may also be able to use your own PIP insurance through your auto insurance. As long as you have used up all of the other PIP, you can possibly use your own even though your car was not involved in the car accident. A Seattle personal injury lawyer can advocate on your behalf to get you these benefits.

Seattle Passengers Can Go After Their Own Driver and The Other Driver

If you are injured in a car accident as a passenger, you have many options of recovery. If your driver and the other driver involved in the car accident both shared fault for the car accident, the passenger can go after both insurance policies to recover their damages. This can be very helpful if one insurance company does not have very much liability insurance coverage, which $25,000 is the minimum limits in Seattle.

Seattle Passenger Car Accident Injury Victims Can Use Their Own UIM as well as Driver’s

If for some reason the other driver does not have insurance, you are entitled to use the driver of your car’s Uninsured Motorist Insurance (UIM). UIM insurance basically steps in as if they other person had insurance and the insurance carrier will use all defenses that person had.

In addition to being able to use the driver of the car’s UIM insurance, a Seattle car accident injury lawyer may be able to advocate for having your own UIM insurance coverage on your vehicles step in and cover you. Your lawyer will have to prove that there is no other means of recovery in order to use this.

What are Seattle Passengers Injured in Car Accidents Entitled to?

If you are injured in a Seattle car accident while riding as a passenger, you are entitled to your medical bills being fully paid for or reimbursed, your lost wages paid, your future lost wages paid if you can no longer work, and pain and suffering. Being injured in a Seattle car accident can leave you with outrageous medical bills, broken bones, and permanent injuries. It is important that you have a Seattle car accident injury lawyer representing you for your case so that you receive what you are entitled to and not what insurance companies want to pay you.

Contact a Seattle car accident injury lawyer today at Cherin Law Firm. We offer free consultations and are paid out of the settlement. Therefore, there is no money out of your pocket and we only get paid if we obtain a settlement for you. Anyone can afford a Seattle car accident injury lawyer but you cannot afford not to have one against the insurance companies.

Andrew CherinSeattle Passenger Car Accident Injury Case
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Pedestrians Injured In Seattle Car Accident

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If you are looking for a Seattle pedestrian car accident injury lawyer, you should be aware of your rights in the car accident. Pedestrian car accidents are some of the worst type of car accident injury cases because the person injured is often severely injured. This is obvious as they have no protection to limit the damages that a car can have on someone like someone safe in a car would have. Pedestrians are more prone to bone fracture type injuries and traumatic brain injuries than those in a car.

How to Prove Fault in a Pedestrian Car Accident Injury Case?

Pedestrians have a lot of advantages and rights to cross streets at certain spots than those in cars in Seattle. Pedestrians have a right of way to cross streets at intersections with cross walks and in unmarked cross walks. An unmarked cross walk is the like an invisible cross walk or where you would usually find a cross walk between streets. In these areas, cars are supposed to wait for the pedestrian and stop to let them cross the street.

What if you are injured in an area not in a cross walk or unmarked cross walk?

If a pedestrian is crossing the street at a spot other than a cross walk or an unmarked cross walk, they are generally not allowed to cross the street and they must wait until all cars have passed to cross safely. This is highly discouraged but people do it all the time when a cross walk or intersection is too far away.

In these situations, if a pedestrian is hit by a car, the pedestrian is not out of luck for recovering damages for being injured. The car driver has an obligation to be careful and prudent to not hit people that are in the road. This means that they must be driving with an awareness for obstacles and others. In Seattle, there is a distraction law that prevents people from using a cell phone while driving or any other acts that cause a driver to be distracted like eating, doing makeup, or smoking a cigarette.

If hit by car 50% your fault, Seattle is a Contributory Fault State so no worries

Contributory fault means that if a pedestrian is partially at fault for crossing the street and getting hit by a car, they can still recover damages minus the percentage fault they are responsible for causing in the car accident. This means that if the person crossing the street was deemed 50% at fault for being hit by the car, the judge will award the person hit by the car 50% of their damages. This means that if the other person caused $1 million dollars in damages, the pedestrian would recover $500,000 from the driver of the car’s insurance company.

Damages that a Pedestrian Can Recover in a Seattle Car Accident

If a pedestrian is hit by a car in Seattle, they can recover the cost of their medical bills, lost wages, future lost wages, and pain and suffering. If the pedestrian is hit by a car and the driver has PIP insurance, you are entitled to the driver’s PIP coverage to cover your medical bills up front, which is not available to a car driver hit by another car driver. This is unique as it applies to bicyclists, pedestrian, and passengers who are going after the driver of the car for negligence in causing a car accident.

Pedestrians Entitled to PIP of Driver and Their Own PIP Policy

Generally, you must pay for your own medical bills until you reach a settlement with the defendant’s insurance company for your total damages. However, most PIP policies are only $10,000 which may not be enough to cover your medical bills. At this point, a Seattle personal injury lawyer would look into trying to use your car insurance PIP policy to apply to the medical bills, your own medical insurance, or delaying payment of medical bills until we reach a settlement for the pedestrian’s injuries.

If you are injured by a car accident as a pedestrian, you are looking at an uphill battle to not only recover and get back to normal life as you know it, but also fighting the insurance company and making sure all your medical bills are paid. A Seattle car accident injury lawyer can allow you to focus on healing while they figure out how to get coverage for your injuries and negotiate a good settlement that you deserve. Contact Cherin Law Firm today for a free consultation.

Andrew CherinPedestrians Injured In Seattle Car Accident
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Seattle pedestrian hit by car jaywalking, can they recover damages?

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Seattle injury car accident with pedestrian

Who is at fault in a situations where someone is hit while they are walking across an area of a street that does not have a cross walk or and is not an unmarked crosswalk? There are plenty of areas in Seattle where pedestrians decide to cross the street between cross walks, whether it is to cross to their car, get to a movie theatre, get to a sho, etc. 

If someone is hit as a pedestrian by a car at a non crosswalk area, they can still recover damages from the driver of the other car. Washington State is a comparative fault state so the jury would weigh what percentage of fault each person had for the pedestrian being hit. The pedestrian could be at fault for jumping in front of the car and the car could be at fault for speeding or not paying attention to the road ahead of them. Additionally, the pedestrian would then recover for the personal injury damages they suffered due to the car accident, offset by the percentage they were at fault and the damages they caused to the driver of the car.

In Seattle, pedestrians are required by law to cross the street in a cross walk or at an unmarked cross walk. They are generally not allowed to cross the street in between blocks. This is for the safety of pedestrians and drivers because cars are more likely to see pedestrians at cross walks and at the end of a block.

In addition to being required to cross the street at crosswalks, pedestrians are also not allowed to jump out into the street. They are to wait at the cross walk until a car stops for them before entering the street. This again is for the safety of pedestrians and cars to prevent car accidents. While the pedestrian has the right of way and cars are to yield the right of way to pedestrians, pedestrians cannot jump blindly out into the street and possibly cause a car accident by being hit by the car or causing the car to slam on their brakes and then be rear ended in another car accident.

(1) The operator of an approaching vehicle shall stop and remain stopped to allow a pedestrian or bicycle to cross the roadway within an unmarked or marked crosswalk when the pedestrian or bicycle is upon or within one lane of the half of the roadway upon which the vehicle is traveling or onto which it is turning. For purposes of this section “half of the roadway” means all traffic lanes carrying traffic in one direction of travel, and includes the entire width of a one-way roadway.
(2) No pedestrian or bicycle shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk, run, or otherwise move into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impossible for the driver to stop.

RCW 46.61.240 Crossing at other than crosswalks.

(1) Every pedestrian crossing a roadway at any point other than within a marked crosswalk or within an unmarked crosswalk at an intersection shall yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway.
Andrew CherinSeattle pedestrian hit by car jaywalking, can they recover damages?
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When do you have to stop for school buses?

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A lot of people are confused on where and when people are supposed to stop for school buses in Seattle. Some people believe that oncoming traffic doesn’t have to stop but the cars behind the bus do have to stop. When do you have to stop for school buses?

According to RCW 46.61.370 and SMC 11.53.440, you must stop for school buses if you are traveling behind the school bus  no matter the type of road or highway you are on if the school bus driver has their amber stop sign out and flashing. If you are going the opposite direction of the school bus, you must stop for the school bus on all roads except those divided by a barrier or roads with three or more lanes or traffic going each direction.

Stopping for school buses is for the safety of the children on the bus that need to cross the street to get to their house or get onto the bus. Not stopping for buses creates a danger where young children may run into the street and possibly get hit by a car causing a car accident to the young pedestrian. Stopping for school buses helps avoids pedestrian car accidents to young children and preventing significant injuries suffered in Seattle car accidents.

Fines for not stopping for a school bus with a stop sign out on the bus are double and are $419 in King County.

The Seattle school district along with others school districts in King County have installed high resolution cameras on their school bus stop signs to take pictures of license plates of cars that do not obey the stop sign of school buses. The pictures are sent to King County Sheriff to enforce.

During a pilot program last year, Seattle school district officials said they recorded nearly 600 vehicles passing a stopped school bus over 112 school days. While it’s against the law to pass a stopped bus, bus drivers don’t have time to record license-plate numbers and other information on their own.

11.53.440 – Overtaking and passing school bus.

Except as provided in subsections C and D of this section, the driver of a vehicle upon overtaking or meeting from either direction any school bus which has stopped on a roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging any schoolchildren shall stop the vehicle before reaching such school bus when there is in operation on the school bus a visual signal as specified in Section 11.82.520 and the driver shall not proceed until such school bus resumes motion or the visual signals are no longer activated.

B.

The driver of a school bus shall actuate the visual signals required by Section 11.82.520 only when the school bus is stopped on a roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging schoolchildren.

C.

The driver of a vehicle upon a street divided into separate roadways as provided in Section 11.53.080 need not stop upon meeting a school bus which is proceeding in the opposite direction and is stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging schoolchildren.

D.

The driver of a vehicle upon a street with three (3) or more marked traffic lanes need not stop upon meeting a school bus which is proceeding in the opposite direction and is stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging schoolchildren.

E.

The driver of a school bus may stop completely off the roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging school children only when the school children do not have to cross the roadway. The school bus driver shall actuate the hazard warning lamps a defined in RCW 46.37.215 before loading or unloading school children at such stops.

F.

No school bus shall stop on an arterial street at a location other than an intersection, except at designated bus zones, passenger load zones, school loading zones, or load and unload zones for the purpose of receiving or discharging schoolchildren; provided, that school buses receiving or discharging handicapped, impaired or disabled students may stop at the most advantageous location for loading and unloading. (RCW 46.61.370)

(Ord. 119011 § 13, 1998: Ord. 108200 , § 2(11.53.440), 1979.)

RCW 46.61.370

Overtaking or meeting school bus, exceptions—Duties of bus driver—Penalty—Safety cameras.

(1) The driver of a vehicle upon overtaking or meeting from either direction any school bus which has stopped on the roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging any school children shall stop the vehicle before reaching such school bus when there is in operation on said school bus a visual signal as specified in RCW 46.37.190 and said driver shall not proceed until such school bus resumes motion or the visual signals are no longer activated.
(2) The driver of a vehicle upon a highway divided into separate roadways as provided in RCW 46.61.150 need not stop upon meeting a school bus which is proceeding in the opposite direction and is stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging school children.
(3) The driver of a vehicle upon a highway with three or more marked traffic lanes need not stop upon meeting a school bus which is proceeding in the opposite direction and is stopped for the purpose of receiving or discharging school children.
(4) The driver of a school bus shall actuate the visual signals required by RCW 46.37.190 only when such bus is stopped on the roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging school children.
(5) The driver of a school bus may stop completely off the roadway for the purpose of receiving or discharging school children only when the school children do not have to cross the roadway. The school bus driver shall actuate the hazard warning lamps as defined in RCW 46.37.215 before loading or unloading school children at such stops.
(6) Except as provided in subsection (7) of this section, a person found to have committed an infraction of subsection (1) of this section shall be assessed a monetary penalty equal to twice the total penalty assessed under RCW 46.63.110. This penalty may not be waived, reduced, or suspended. Fifty percent of the money so collected shall be deposited into the school zone safety account in the custody of the state treasurer and disbursed in accordance with RCW 46.61.440(5).
(7) An infraction of subsection (1) of this section detected through the use of an automated school bus safety camera under RCW 46.63.180 is not a part of the registered owner’s driving record under RCW 46.52.101 and 46.52.120, and must be processed in the same manner as parking infractions, including for the purposes of RCW 3.50.10035.20.22046.16A.120, and46.20.270(3). However, the amount of the fine issued for a violation of this section detected through the use of an automated school bus safety camera shall not exceed twice the monetary penalty for a violation of this section as provided under RCW46.63.110.

Driving on divided highways.

Whenever any highway has been divided into two or more roadways by leaving an intervening space or by a physical barrier or clearly indicated dividing section or by a median island not less than eighteen inches wide formed either by solid yellow pavement markings or by a yellow crosshatching between two solid yellow lines so installed as to control vehicular traffic, every vehicle shall be driven only upon the right-hand roadway unless directed or permitted to use another roadway by official traffic-control devices or police officers. No vehicle shall be driven over, across or within any such dividing space, barrier or section, or median island, except through an opening in such physical barrier or dividing section or space or median island, or at a crossover or intersection established by public authority.

 

Andrew CherinWhen do you have to stop for school buses?
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Pedestrian car accidents more often pedestrians’ fault?

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Walking is a very fun, stress relief type exercise. However, it can be very dangerous if you are not taking the proper precautions to make sure you are not hit by a car. Electric cars can come up on you very fast and without warning so it is always best to be 100% aware of your surroundings when entering a street from a sidewalk.

The Washington Traffic Safety Commission assessed the pedestrian versus car fatalities occurring between 2008 and 2012 in order to determine the factors that lead to such collisions. During this timeframe, 332 pedestrian fatalities were recorded in the state, which accounted for 14 percent of all traffic fatalities occurring during this time.

Who is most likely to get hit by a car? The study showed that men were more likely to be victims of a fatal pedestrian car crash, accounting for 66.3% of pedestrian versus car deaths during this time. Additionally, the majority of the victims were between the ages of 45 and 65. The reason this is so could be that men take more risks and may be oblivious to certain risks sometimes when they run out into the street. They could believe that cars will stop for them so they walk out into the street before the car has stopped to let them cross the street.

When are people more likely to be hit by a car as a pedestrian? The study showed that most of the pedestrian car accidents were in October and March at night. It This could be due to the sun starting to set earlier in October and people trying to leave work at the same time walking across the street and possibly just after daylight savings time ends in March making it a little darker at night once again with one hour advance.

Where are people more likely to be hit by a car as a pedestrian? You would think that most of the people killed in pedestrian car accidents were on residential streets but two-thirds of all pedestrians killed were fatally struck on an urban road and 45% were killed from crashes occurring on roads with speed limits between 35 and 50 mph, which are considered busier streets or highways. Only 30% occurred on roads with posted speed limits between 15 and 30 mph or neighborhood type roads or roads around schools.

Are the drivers more likely at fault or pedestrians? Most people would believe that the driver was at fault for almost everyone of these accidents. However, distracted driving accounted for 19.8%, impairment occurred in 13.5%, and failure to yield happened in 12.6% of fatal pedestrian accidents. This means driver error only accounted for 45.7% of fatal pedestrian car accidents, which means the pedestrian was more likely to be at fault for a pedestrian car accident at 54.3%.

Things you can do to prevent being hit by a car as a pedestrian – 

  1. Stop and look both ways before crossing a street
  2. Make eye contact with the driver
  3. Make sure the driver comes to a complete stop before crossing
  4. Hold hands with children and others while crossing the street
  5. Wear bright colors or reflective colors when walking

Walking is a great exercise that can lower blood pressure and stress but make sure you walk the streets with care so as to protect you, your children, your friends, your family, and others. If you know of anyone injured as a pedestrian hit by a car, please give them my contact information for a free consultation to make sure they get the professional help they deserve. A Seattle personal injury lawyer is the best one to help guide them and their case to make sure they get what they deserve.

Andrew CherinPedestrian car accidents more often pedestrians’ fault?
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Can you cross on a counting down blinking hand?

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Seattle is one of the worst cities for controlling pedestrians crossing the street, which has led to some of the worst traffic in a city. While there appears to be many routes out of the city, you will almost certainly be caught in only one car making a light during rush hour due to pedestrians continually crossing all intersections even when the hand is blinking stop. Many car accidents and traffic jams are caused by pedestrians darting in front of traffic.

 

Can a pedestrian cross the street in Seattle with a blinking or steady don’t walk sign or hand?

According to RCW 46.61.060 states that pedestrians may not enter the roadway when there is a blinking hand or do not walk sign. This means that anyone that enters the roadway when the hand signal is counting down is violating the law and jay walking.

Is the countdown the time you have to cross the street and if you make it you are not jaywalking?

The countdown is not the amount of time you have to cross the street. You cannot jump into the crosswalk and run across in time and be considered to be in compliance with the law. If you start crossing the street after the do not cross sign or hand starts to blink and countdown, you are in violation of the law. You legally cannot start crossing the street no matter if you can make it in time or not if the hand is blinking and the countdown has begun.

Who is at fault if you accidentally hit a pedestrian that runs into the street without notice to you?

Pedestrians generally have the right of way in cross walks and at unmarked cross walks. Cars have a duty to be mindful of people darting into the street and stop if possible to avoid hitting another car or person, according to RCW 46.61.245. However, pedestrians do not have the right of way to just run into the street without looking at traffic no matter if it is a cross walk or not. RCW 46.61.235(2) – No pedestrian or bicycle shall suddenly leave a curb or other place of safety and walk, run, or otherwise move into the path of a vehicle which is so close that it is impossible for the driver to stop.

If you are injured in a car accident or hit by a car as a pedestrian, you have a lot more rights than may appear. You may have a case for personal injury damages even if the police report states that you are at fault. Preserve your rights and your case now by contacting a Seattle personal injury lawyer for your car accident injury case immediately.

Andrew CherinCan you cross on a counting down blinking hand?
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