Child Pedestrian Deaths on the Rise in Florida
A Ford Mustang driven by one man was found to be traveling at 102 miles per hour when he struck and killed a mother-daughter duo that was legally crossing the street in May. The woman and her two-year-old daughter were killed when the man was involved in a street race with another vehicle. He has been charged with two counts of vehicular manslaughter.
Child Pedestrian Accidents on the Rise in Florida
The warm weather in Florida makes it a haven for people to be out and about walking year round. Unfortunately, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) released statistics showing that in 2015, over 600 pedestrians were struck and killed by vehicles. The only state that had more fatalities than that is California. Nearby states of Alabama, Georgia, and Louisiana didn’t have that many pedestrian fatalities combined.
Factors that Lead to Child Pedestrian Accidents
With those statistics it is clear that Florida is the deadliest state for pedestrians already, but children, due to their small size and decreased visibility, are even more at risk. When these types of accidents don’t result in a fatality, they may result in disabilities that could last the lifetime of the child. The most common child pedestrian accidents include the following:
- Walking to school
- Backover accidents
- Accidents caused by sudden movements
- Visibility issues
- Distracted pedestrians
- Moving outside of crosswalks
- Parking lot accidents
- Accidents that occur when a child exits a school bus
Liability for Child Pedestrian Injuries
In many accidents involving children pedestrians, drivers attempt to place the blame on the child. Rarely will a driver claim that it was their own carelessness that resulted in the accident. Of course, children are young, immature, and unpredictable and sometimes do contribute to the accident. However, a driver is still expected to exercise caution and yield to pedestrians. When a driver fails to exercise this caution and it results in injuries to a child pedestrian, they may be proven negligent.
When fault is determined, the family and child could be awarded damages for pain and suffering, medical costs, and other expenses related to the child’s injuries. A wrongful death claim may be filed by the parents if the child died as a result of the accident. If a wrongful death lawsuit is filed, compensation for other expenses, such as funeral and burial costs could also be awarded.
Florida has a comparative fault statute when it comes to damages awarded in personal injury cases. This means that each party will be assigned a degree of fault by the judge. In most cases, however, because the court recognizes that children lack the maturity and knowledge of an adult, a lesser standard of care is applied to them.
Contact a Personal Injury Attorney
If your child has died or been injured due to the negligence of a driver, you may be entitled to compensation for their death or injuries. The experienced attorneys at Leifer & Ramirez have years of experience representing Florida families who have been injured by another party. Contact us today and we will review your case and determine what your best course of action will be for your claim.