Pedestrian Accidents – Commonplace in Hawaii
The sidewalks of Hawaii are nearly always crowded with pedestrians. Both locals and tourists travel on feet from the beach to restaurants and bars. This is believed to be a contributing factor to why Hawaii has a higher pedestrian accident rate, on a per capita basis, than the national average.
Drivers can become frustrated as they wait for pedestrians to make their way through crosswalks, and fail to yield to the right-of-way of pedestrians. Drivers also may exceed speed limits throughout the state, increasing their chances of not seeing a pedestrian while reducing their potential reaction time to avoid a collision.
The law requires a car to stop when a pedestrian enters into a crosswalk. On large streets, a driver usually will see other cars in front coming to a halt. Even when the driver is in a lane that is clear, the law still requires the driver to stop. This is because it’s safe to assume that the cars ahead are stopping to let a pedestrian pass.
Another type of pedestrian accident is referred to as the “dart-out” accident. A person, most often a child, darts out into the street from in-between two obstacles that obstruct the driver’s vision. The driver usually has little to no time to stop.
Keep in mind that pedestrians are entitled to the right of way only in a designated crosswalk. If they cross in the middle of a block where there is no crosswalk, they are illegally jaywalking, which they can be cited for.
Pedestrian accidents tend to result in severe injuries, including brain and spinal injuries. Such injuries can occur even at low speeds.
Our Hawaii pedestrian accident lawyers will always explore all options to ensure our clients have the greatest chance of receiving maximum compensation for their injuries. We will obtain experts to reconstruct the scene of the accident and conduct a thorough investigation. For those injured while visiting the islands, we also handle tourist claims, for which we provide the same level of service offered to our Hawaiian clients.
Proving a Pedestrian Accident Claim in Hawaii
For a claim to yield compensation in a Hawaii pedestrian accident case, the injured must prove negligence on the part of the driver. The state of Hawaii specifies four elements that need to be proven in such a case:
(1) Duty – Easily proven, given that all drivers have a responsibility to follow the rules of the road.
(2) Breach of Duty – Proving that the driver did, in fact, breach their duty to obey road regulations. This sometimes requires recreation of the scene by an expert.
(3) Causation – Proving that the victim’s injuries were in fact caused by the accident, and
(4) Damages – Proving through testimony the amount of damages due to the victim.
As you can see, proving an accident case in Hawaii poses many challenges. Call one of our pedestrian accident lawyers in Hawaii today to discuss your case.