There’s no doubt that pedestrians have an inherently increased risk of personal injury when traveling by foot on our busy San Diego roadways. Unfortunately, these risks become even greater at dusk and dawn when visibility is limited for both the driver and the pedestrian. But if a pedestrian accident occurs and you’re behind the wheel, we simply can’t stress it enough: You must stay at the scene of the accident. If someone is injured, call 9-11 as soon as possible. Do not flee the scene. It’s not only California law but it’s also the responsible thing to do, especially if someone’s life is on the line.
As personal injury attorneys, we urge San Diegan drivers to take our advice, especially following a recent Lemon Grove incident that involved an alleged hit-and-run driver and a tragic pedestrian death.
According to Fox 5 San Diego (3/8/2015), the driver in question struck and tragically killed a pedestrian in Lemon Grove after the pedestrian was said to have been running along one of the city’s busy intersections. The driver was arrested following a return to the scene of the accident about an hour later.
He was taken into custody following the incident.
The accident occurred earlier this month, around 7:40 p.m. – a time of day that’s notorious for low visibility. Sadly, the pedestrian was pronounced dead the scene.
Drugs and alcohol were not believed to be a factor in this Lemon Grove pedestrian accident.
HIT AND RUN ACCIDENTS: DO THE RIGHT THING
We want to first urge San Diego pedestrians to be extra diligent when walking busy streets in our city. Here in San Diego, our pedestrian traffic is all the more abundant considering our great weather that allows for more foot traffic when compared to the snowy counterparts of the East Coast. Whether by bike or by foot, San Diego pedestrians are everywhere.
If you’re a San Diego pedestrian, we ask that you be street wise and wear reflective clothing when commuting by foot. If you use the roads for exercise, be all the more diligent, especially if there are no known crosswalks. Carry a flashlight and consider using San Diego roadways during ample sunshine when visibility is highest. Dusk and dawn are the worst times of day to be a pedestrian – consider an alternative solution, if possible.
Now, when it comes to hit-and-run accidents, as personal injury attorneys, we want to remind and urge all San Diegans to be diligent, responsible drivers. First and foremost, it’s always prudent to try to drive safely to avoid an accident altogether. Of course, that goes without saying! But sometimes, accidents do happen so it’s important to know what to do if one occurs.
If an accident occurs:
- PULL OVER TO A SAFE SPOT. Don’t leave your vehicle in the middle of the road, if possible. Let other traffic through. Not only that, but by moving your vehicles off the road, you could avoid additional traffic accidents that would occur as a result of rubbernecking. Of course, use common sense, too – if it’s impossible to move your cars, then wait for emergency response to arrive.
- STAY CALM. Your initial response to a car accident is to naturally become panicked, but try to breathe normally and remain calm. Some people may have a response to flee the scene from sheer panic, but not only is it illegal but you could be the only person to call 9-11 if emergency response is needed. It would be sheer irresponsibility to leave and put someone’s life on the line.
- CALL FOR HELP. If anyone is injured, call 9-11 right away.
- GATHER INFORMATION. The information you gather could start by the name, driver’s license and plate number of the other individual in the accident. You might also want to take pictures of the damage to your vehicle or, if you’re a pedestrian, your bicycle or your person. Jot down any details that may help you remember the way the accident occurred. Remember, whether you are a pedestrian or driver, be careful what you say. In such a state of panic, you may mistakenly take responsibility for an accident that may not have been your fault. Such admission of guilt could be used against you later, so use prudence when speaking or discussing the accident.
- NEVER FLEE! It’s illegal and it’s wrong – plain and simple. Do the right thing and stay at the scene of the accident.
Print our car accident checklist now and keep it in your glove box… although, we hope you never have to use it!
ABOUT MICHAEL PINES
Michael Pines is a nationally-recognized safety advocate based in San Diego, California. He is the founder of the Law Offices of Michael Pines, APC, a personal injury law firm specializing in car accident injury and wrongful death. If you have been injured as a result of a car accident, call now for a FREE consultation with Mike: 1-858-551-2090. We never collect a penny unless we win your case!