Drunk drivers are dangerous for themselves and everyone on the road. Drinking and driving and illegal in all states and the legal limit of .08 is a reason good enough to get arrested. But what happens when you are involved in a car accident where you hit a drunk pedestrian. Walking while drunk is a dangerous thing, as dangerous as drunk driving. If a drunk pedestrian gets hit, the liability might not be as clear as it could be if they were sober. The driver could use the pedestrian’s intoxication as a defense. If you were involved in an accident where you hit a drunk pedestrian, it’s important to stay at the scene and help the person. Call the police and immediately call a Portland DUI attorney.
How to Determine Fault in a Pedestrian Accident
Тhere are many factors that you need to into determining fault in an accident that involves a pedestrian. The driver and the pedestrian should be careful and aware of the surroundings and act suitably and safely.
- The pedestrian might be found at fault if they were doing the following:
- Moving out into the middle of a street from a hidden location, (behind a car or a tree);
- Not paying attention to surroundings (texting or talking on the phone);
- Violating traffic laws (walking out into an intersection against the light).
But, the full picture should be considered when determining fault. If the pedestrian was jaywalking on an empty and clear road, and they got hit because a drunk driver was speeding, then the pedestrian will be at fault. However, the pedestrian is partly at fault if they were jaywalking on a busy road and the driver wasn’t able to avoid them. A drunk pedestrian may also be at fault, but the driver (if sober) should be careful and try to avoid them.
However, if the person came out of nowhere, or it was a night and the driver wasn’t able to see them, then the pedestrian will be at fault. The circumstances can be complex when it comes to determining liability. This is why it’s important to consult with an attorney, especially if the injured pedestrian files a lawsuit against you. In almost all cases when a pedestrian is hit, the driver has more liability than the pedestrian, even if the pedestrian was drunk.
The case may get even worse for the driver if they too were drinking. In that case, the driver will be arrested and will face serious penalties including prison time, installing an Ignition Interlock device, paying a high fine, and completing a program.
What to Do After the Accident
Once the police arrive, they will take statements from the driver, pedestrian, and possible witnesses who saw what happened. If you appear suspicious, you might be asked to take a breathalyzer test. If the pedestrian shows clear signs of impairment, you can use this with your defense. It’s important to collaborate with the police, but be sure to keep your answers for after you talk to your DUI attorney. After the accident, make sure to inform your insurance company about the accident.
Avoiding Pedestrian Accidents
Pedestrians are especially vulnerable on the road, even if they are sober. So if they were drinking it’s better to ask for a ride home or call an Uber or a cab. No matter how careful a driver you are, the best way to avoid pedestrian accidents is to be fully aware of people who walk, cycle, rollerblade, ride scooters or play on the road. You should always be sober when you sit behind the wheel. Although you can’t predict what will happen on the road, when you’re sober, you have better reflections and can react fast. Even if the other party is impaired, you can manage to avoid such an accident.
Although you were not drunk in the said accident, it’s a good idea to consult with a DUI attorney so they can let you know what you can expect in the further process. If you are facing charges, then a defense attorney will be a better option. If you have any questions, dilemmas, or aren’t sure about your case and what outcome will it have, our team at Trilogy Law Group will gladly help you. We will review your case and let you know what you may expect and what further steps you need to take.
You can contact us here and we’ll schedule your first consultation.