Pedestrian Accident Attorneys Proudly Serving Las Vegas & All of Nevada
According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), pedestrian traffic deaths are on the rise. In 2021, 7,388 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the U.S., and more than 60,000 were injured. On average that year, a pedestrian died every 71 minutes. Nevada saw 84 pedestrian deaths in 2021, increasing to an estimated 90 lives lost in 2022.
In Las Vegas, Burg Simpson advocates for the victims of pedestrian accidents and their families. With local insight and a national reach, we are committed to guiding our clients through the legal process with understanding, especially during these agonizing moments. For over four decades, we have passionately championed the rights of those harmed by negligence as Good Lawyers. Changing Lives.®.
Burg Simpson’s lawyers can help victims and their families recover from their tragic losses when a devastating injury or wrongful death occurs because of a pedestrian accident. If you have been injured or lost someone in an accident, call our experienced Las Vegas pedestrian accident lawyers at 702-668-2070 or contact us online for a FREE and confidential case review.
Understanding Pedestrian Accidents in Las Vegas
The allure of Las Vegas is not confined to its shimmering casinos and lively nightlife. Its bustling streets, filled with tourists and locals alike, make pedestrian safety a paramount concern. Yet, every year, too many people find themselves victims of pedestrian accidents. These accidents often result in severe injuries and even death.
Las Vegas sees millions of visitors each year, and pedestrian traffic is always heavy. Unfortunately, this means accidents are not rare. Factors contributing to these mishaps include:
- Distracted or impaired driving
- Poorly lit crosswalks or streets
- Failure to yield the right of way
- Dangerous intersections
The vast majority of these tragic—and completely avoidable—accidents occur at night. After dark, factors at play include the obvious lack of visibility and the higher likelihood of drunk drivers. Due to increased foot and motor vehicle traffic, urban areas and non-intersection crossings are more likely to result in pedestrian accidents. Speeding drivers, poor city planning, and other variables lead to a higher rate of pedestrian accidents in urban areas.
However, rural areas also have their fair share of accidents. Even though there are fewer pedestrian accidents outside of cities, pedestrian injuries are usually much more serious and more likely to be fatal. Rural mortality rates are impacted by higher vehicle speeds, a lack of proper walkways, and greater distances to medical treatment.
Your Rights as a Pedestrian
Nevada law protects the rights of pedestrians. Drivers are mandated to exercise care, stop for pedestrians at crosswalks, and adhere to speed limits. When these regulations are not upheld and injuries occur, victims have legal avenues to seek compensation for their losses.
The attorneys at Burg Simpson offer a FREE case evaluation to review your claim. Contacting a pedestrian accident lawyer ensures that every avenue for just compensation is explored.
What Damages Can Be Recovered in Pedestrian Accident Claims?
Injured pedestrians may be entitled to compensation for their losses. These damages could include:
- Medical expenses (current and future)
- Lost wages
- Loss of earning capacity
- Pain & suffering
- Home and/or vehicle modifications
- Household assistance expenses
- Permanent impairment and/or disfigurement
The families of pedestrians killed by a driver’s negligence may also be eligible to recover damages. These may include:
- Medical bills
- Funeral & burial expenses
- Loss of probable support & benefits
- Loss of consortium, society, comfort, & companionship
- Pain & suffering
In rare circumstances, such as when a driver is drug- or alcohol-impaired, using a cell phone, or speeding, a jury may decide to award exemplary and/or punitive damages (see Nevada Revised Statutes (NRS) § 42.005 & 42.0010) to the injured party. These damages are designed to punish the wrongdoer.
What Is the Major Cause of Pedestrian Accidents in Nevada?
It is difficult to narrow down the cause of pedestrian accidents to one element, as most accidents are caused by a combination of factors. However, certain behaviors and conditions will amplify the chances of an accident and the related consequences. Some major contributors to pedestrian accidents are:
In 2021, speeding was considered a factor in 29% of all traffic-related fatalities and indicated in at least 8% of pedestrian fatalities. The higher the rate at which a vehicle is moving, the higher the probability that an accident results in fatal injuries. The “risk grows from just 10% at 23 miles per hour (mph) to 90% at 58 mph,” per the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA).
Alcohol & Drug Impairment
A drunk driver is incredibly dangerous to motorists and pedestrians while on the road. In 2021, the GHSA reported that 19% of drivers involved in pedestrian crashes with fatalities tested above the legal limit to drive. On the other hand, 30.5% of pedestrians killed in crashes tested above that same limit. Though the onus falls more frequently upon the driver of the motor vehicle, awareness of the statistics may help pedestrians avoid dangerous situations.
Inadequate lighting remains a critical contributor to pedestrian accidents in Nevada. Proper illumination is essential for safe navigation for both drivers and pedestrians. Reduced visibility, missed traffic signals and signs, and misjudgment of hazards can all contribute to pedestrian accidents. Las Vegas, known for its vibrant nightlife, sees a considerable number of pedestrians and vehicles coexisting after dark. Proper street lighting is paramount for their mutual safety.
Lack of Sidewalks
The lack of sidewalks is a significant, yet often overlooked, factor in pedestrian accidents. Sidewalks serve as a protective barrier between vehicles and pedestrians, offering a safer space for people to walk. Their absence forces pedestrians onto the roadway or unstable ground, making them vulnerable due to increased exposure, limited visibility, uneven terrain, and a restricted area for movement.
Distracted driving is an escalating concern not just in Nevada, but nationwide. NRS § 484B.165 specifically prohibits texting or talking without a hands-free system while driving. Despite the legal implications, many still engage in these dangerous habits, encompassing any activity that diverts a driver’s attention from the primary task of driving. These distractions include:
- Phones & devices
- Radio & climate control
- Eating & drinking
- Conversations with passengers
- Things outside the vehicle (accidents, billboards, road construction, people or places of interest, etc.)
These diversions increase the risk of an accident, endangering the driver, other road users, and pedestrians.
Who Is Liable in a Las Vegas Pedestrian Accident?
Determining liability in a pedestrian accident can be complex. Multiple factors contribute to an accident, and sometimes there are various liable parties as well. The liable parties may include:
- Negligent Drivers
If a driver disregards traffic laws, such as speeding, driving under the influence, or failing to yield to pedestrians at crosswalks, they can be held liable for damages.
- Driver’s Employer
A company that employs a driver can be held responsible for damages when it fails to properly hire, train, or supervise their drivers or entrusts a driver with its vehicles knowing that the driver is a danger to the public.
- Pedestrian Responsibility
Pedestrians must also adhere to traffic laws. If they jaywalk, cross against signals, or act unpredictably, they may share the liability.
- City or Municipality
In cases where poor road design, insufficient lighting, or lack of proper signage contributes to the accident, the city or local governing body might be held responsible.
- Other Parties
Factors like malfunctioning vehicles due to manufacturing defects or businesses that block sidewalks could render additional parties liable.
It is important to note that under Nevada’s modified comparative negligence law (NRS § 41.141), a pedestrian can still recover damages even if found partially at fault. However, their compensation might be reduced proportionally. Consulting with a Las Vegas pedestrian accident lawyer can offer a clearer picture of potential liability and avenues for compensation in specific situations.
Steps to Take Following a Pedestrian Accident
After an accident, there are steps you should take to ensure your well-being and support a possible claim for compensation:
1. Seek Medical Attention
Your health takes priority. If you have been severely injured, call 911 or proceed to the nearest emergency room for immediate care. Even if injuries seem minor, it is crucial to get checked. That could mean a trip to urgent care or scheduling an appointment with your general practitioner as soon as possible. Not only are these visits imperative for your health, but they are also crucial to diagnose and document your injuries and losses.
2. Document the Scene & Talk to Witnesses
Remember, take care of your health first. Then, if possible, take photos of the accident site, weather and lighting conditions, your injuries, and any vehicles involved. Also, talk to the driver and any witnesses. Obtain contact information and their accounts of the accident. A friend or family member may be able to help with this while you get medical care.
3. File a Police Report
Per NRS § 484E.010, you are required to stop at the scene of a crash that involves an injury or death. You are also required to file a report with the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles within 10 days of the accident if it involves injury, death, or more than $750 in property damage (NRS § 484E.070). This is separate from the immediate requirement to notify law enforcement of more serious accidents. If a law enforcement officer has investigated the incident, they are required to file this report. You will need to request a copy for your records, as it can serve as vital evidence.
4. Consult a Pedestrian Accident Lawyer
Before talking to insurance companies, seek advice from a professional to safeguard your rights. Insurance adjusters are incentivized to focus on their bottom line, not your physical and financial well-being. They will take every opportunity to catch you in an admission of fault and lowball your settlement offer.
The pedestrian accident lawyers at Burg Simpson are practiced in negotiation and are experienced in dealing with insurance companies. Let your attorney advocate for your rights to compensation. Contact us today for a FREE consultation.
Pedestrian Safety Tips
While we stand ready to assist after accidents, we also champion proactive safety measures. Here are some tips to help you stay safe:
- Use designated crosswalks and/or sidewalks
- If you must walk along the shoulder, face traffic
- Make yourself visible at night
- Avoid distractions like phones
- Refrain from unpredictable movements and actions
- Always be vigilant of your surroundings
- Try to make eye contact with drivers as they approach—they may not be able to see you
- Avoid alcohol and drugs, especially if you know you will be walking in a hazardous area
What Drivers Can Do to Prevent Pedestrian Accidents
There are a number of precautions drivers can take to avoid a pedestrian accident, such as:
- Always be vigilant for pedestrians. They may not be walking where they should be, and visibility may be compromised, especially at night or in bad weather.
- Stop at crosswalks and crosswalk signs without fail.
- Never pass a vehicle at a crosswalk—they may be waiting for a pedestrian to cross.
- Slow down and look for pedestrians when turning.
- Never drive while intoxicated!
- Obey the speed limit, and slow down if you see pedestrians.
- Be aware and slow your speed when children are present or in areas where kids frequently play, like school zones and residential neighborhoods.
What Is the Hit & Run Law in Nevada?
In Nevada, the term hit and run refers to a driver’s failure to stop and provide aid or information after being involved in a traffic accident. Under NRS § 484, a driver involved in an accident that results in injury or death to any person or damage to any vehicle or property must:
- Stop Immediately
The driver must stop at the scene or as close as possible without obstructing traffic.
- Provide Personal Information
This includes their name, address, insurance information, and the vehicle’s registration number. If requested, they must also present their driver’s license.
- Render Aid
If someone is injured, the driver must provide reasonable assistance, which may include transporting or arranging transport to emergency medical care.
- Inform Law Enforcement
In the event of injury, death, or property damage above $750, the police must be informed.
Fleeing the scene without complying can result in serious penalties, from hefty fines to imprisonment. If you or someone you know is a victim of a hit and run in Nevada, our team of Las Vegas pedestrian accident lawyers is prepared to assist in pursuing the justice they deserve.
Why Choose the Las Vegas Pedestrian Accident Lawyers at Burg Simpson?
Burg Simpson’s Las Vegas office is led by distinguished attorney Jack F. DeGree. An experienced litigator with a proven track record, DeGree represents clients in pedestrian accident claims and other personal injury matters. There are a lot of personal injury lawyers out there, but not a lot have our experience, skill, and understanding. We are Good Lawyers. Changing Lives.®, offering:
Large Firm Power. Small Firm Care.
We do not just serve Las Vegas—we know Las Vegas. Our deep understanding of local laws and familiarity with Nevada streets, coupled with our national clout and resources, places us in an advantageous position to handle your case.
We firmly believe in personalized legal service. Our commitment to fighting for the underdog ensures that every story is heard, all rights are defended, and the best possible resolution is consistently achieved.
A Legacy of Success
In over 40 years of service, our Las Vegas pedestrian accident lawyers have secured more than $2 billion in verdicts and settlements for our clients. Your trust in us is backed by a proven track record.
Contact a Las Vegas Pedestrian Accident Lawyer Today
No one should navigate the aftermath of a pedestrian accident alone. Our Las Vegas pedestrian accident lawyers are dedicated to ensuring victims receive the representation, care, and compensation they deserve. Should the unforeseen come to pass, we are just a call away.
Call Burg Simpson today at 702-668-2070 for a FREE and confidential case review, or contact us through our website via chat or our FREE consultation form. We can discuss the specific circumstances of your pedestrian accident or wrongful death case and help you understand the claim and your potential damages.
If you or a loved one has faced such an ordeal, our dedicated team is here to guide, advocate, and seek justice for you. We are proud to serve clients in Las Vegas and throughout Nevada.