Talking a walk or going for a jog is a healthy pastime for many Florida residents. Some individuals live close enough to their workplaces that they can commute on foot. Even children often walk to school on sidewalks and through streets all throughout Tallahassee. It is not uncommon for drivers to see men, women, and kids out as pedestrians when they are on local roads.
Drivers have a duty to act reasonably when they operate their vehicles, and when they breach their duties and cause injuries to others, they can be held liable for the losses of those they harm. Similarly, pedestrians have a duty to act reasonably when they are traveling by foot. When they breach their duties and are harmed by vehicles, they may not have the same legal options to pursue their losses had they acted reasonably at the time of their accidents. This post will examine reasonableness in pedestrian accidents and readers are reminded that this post offers no legal advice.
What is reasonableness under the law?
Reasonableness is an important term in tort law. It is a standard that a party may be held to for the purposes of determining negligence. When a person has a duty to act reasonably given the circumstances that they are in, they must meet that duty to attempt to avoid legal liability.
In almost any situation, an adult as a duty to act reasonably given their circumstances and surroundings. That includes pedestrians. Pedestrians cannot jaywalk, disregard crossing signals, and allow distractions to cloud their ability to safely walk near and through roads. When they do and they are harmed by motor vehicles, they may be found responsible for their own injuries.
When a pedestrian and driver are both negligent
There are situations when pedestrian victims and motor vehicle drivers may both be negligent in the accidents that result in pedestrian harm. When this happens, Florida’s comparative negligence law applies. A victim’s recovery may be reduced by the percent of negligence their actions contributed to their harm.
Accidents between vehicles and pedestrians are common. When they occur, victims should understand that they do have rights and options under the law. Their trusted personal injury attorneys can help them work through their cases and see the recovery of their accident-related losses.