Lakeland Pedestrian Accident Attorneys
Despite the installation of traffic signals and the institution of specific laws designed to govern pedestrian traffic throughout the area, Lakeland streets can endanger pedestrians.
Pedestrian accidents often cause devastating injuries. Pedestrians usually have little to no protection from the road around them, or from the vehicle that strikes them—unlike passengers in a vehicle, they do not have a cage of metal protecting them. As a result, pedestrian accident victims often suffer severe, lifelong complications from their injuries.
Did you suffer injuries in a Lakeland pedestrian accident? Frank and Jennifer Fernandez of The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys have helped countless Lakeland pedestrian accident victims obtain the compensation they really deserve for the injuries they sustained in those accidents. Contact a Lakeland pedestrian accident lawyer at The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys today for your free consultation.
The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys: Why Choose Us
The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys is 100 percent devoted to helping the injured to obtain the compensation they deserve through personal injury claims. Frank and Jennifer Fernandez have handled thousands of personal injury claims over 25 years.
Hazards for Lakeland Pedestrians
Florida remains one of the most dangerous states in the United States for pedestrians and cyclists, and Lakeland has one of the most dangerous areas in the state—due, at least in part, to the city’s design and several clear hazards that increase the risk of pedestrian accidents.
Poor Lighting at Intersections
Clear lighting can make a huge difference for Lakeland pedestrians. Unfortunately, if the drivers of other vehicles cannot see those pedestrians, they have a higher likelihood of striking them, often resulting in severe injury. Poor lighting at commonly-used pedestrian intersections can significantly raise the risk of a severe accident.
Crosswalks throughout Polk County have common issues. Many residents complain that Lakeland crosswalks end up spaced too far apart, which can increase the odds that pedestrians will choose to cross at unmarked locations.
Where crosswalks do exist, especially those at intersections with clear crossing symbols, they often do not allow adequate time for elderly or handicapped individuals to cross the intersection safely, which may raise the risk of severe accidents.
Roads Have Wide Lanes that Encourage High Speeds
At many Lakeland crosswalks, the roads have unnecessarily wide lanes. Those wide lanes may decrease some of the risks for pedestrians and cyclists at the side of the road, but they may pose an additional danger for pedestrians trying to cross the street: they increase the speed drivers often travel down those roads, which may increase the severity of pedestrian collisions.
Furthermore, those wide lanes extend to right turn lanes that may take drivers straight through intersections even as pedestrians use them.
Lakeland has many known dangerous intersections that increase the risks to drivers and pedestrians alike.
These may include:
- U.S. 98 North and Griffin Road
- Memorial Boulevard and North Florida Avenue
- South Florida Avenue and Lake Miriam Drive
- U.S. 98 at Memorial Boulevard
Lakeland, Florida sees a great deal of traffic every day. Unfortunately, heavy traffic may substantially raise accident risk for everyone, including pedestrians who also use those roads and intersections.
Frank and Jennifer Fernandez Can Help Lakeland Pedestrian Accident Victims
The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys is 100 percent devoted to helping the injured to obtain the compensation they deserve through the personal injury claims process. Frank and Jennifer Fernandez have handled thousands of personal injury claims over 25 years.
Frank and Jennifer Fernandez work to help their clients achieve the best possible results in their claims. The firm has recovered more than $100 million in damages for its clients, through both jury verdicts and settlements with the insurance company. Past pedestrian accidents include a wrongful death settlement of $450,000 to the family of a victim killed in a pedestrian accident and $136,000 awarded to a pedestrian accident victim who suffered severe lower back injuries.
While these are only past results and no guarantee of future recovery, at The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, we have a long-standing reputation as Florida personal injury attorneys who will go the extra mile to help our clients maximize the compensation they can recover after severe accidents resulting in substantial injuries.
Many insurance companies will take accident victims more seriously when they have a personal injury attorney helping them maximize their compensation. A personal injury attorney also offers several other advantages to your pedestrian accident claim.
We help build your case against the liable party.
A compelling claim can make a big difference in the compensation you ultimately recover for your injuries. At The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, we work to help our clients establish all the details of their claims. Our attorneys conduct a full investigation into the accident and all parties that share liability, from the designers of dangerous intersections to drivers who took dangerous actions on the roads that led to pedestrian accidents and injuries.
We help you deal with the insurance company.
In most Lakeland pedestrian accident claims, you will need to deal with the liable driver’s insurance company. Unfortunately, insurance companies often make it more difficult than necessary to get the compensation you deserve. At The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, we can take over negotiations for our clients, freeing them up to focus on the other elements of their recoveries.
We help our clients understand the compensation they should expect following Lakeland pedestrian accident injuries.
Many insurance companies will try to convince accident victims to accept a low settlement offer, rather than offering those victims the compensation they really deserve for their injuries. At The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, we help our clients understand the compensation they really deserve for pedestrian accident injuries, which puts them in a better position to negotiate with the insurance company.
Pedestrian Accident Statistics for Florida and Lakeland
Year-round beautiful weather and plenty of tourist destinations in the Sunshine State’s largest cities mean that many people choose to walk to their destinations instead of driving. However, all the things that make Florida cities like Tampa and Lakeland so appealing to pedestrians can also make them more dangerous for those who travel by foot.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), Florida was third in the nation for pedestrian accident deaths. While South Florida ranks as the most dangerous part of the state for pedestrians, the Tampa—St. Petersburg—Lakeland area is still quite treacherous.
Between 2010 and 2019, Florida had 5,893 pedestrian accident fatalities. The Tampa—St. Petersburg—Clearwater metro area ranked fifth for pedestrian fatalities in that period, at 223, while nearby Lakeland—Winterhaven ranked right behind in sixth place, with 215 pedestrian deaths.
Each number represents a life cut tragically short and a family left mourning the loss of a loved one, likely facing financial straits and undue hardship. A Lakeland pedestrian accident attorney can help your family explore legal options if you lost a loved one in a pedestrian traffic accident.
Taking a Deeper Dive—Lakeland and Tampa Accident Facts
The number of people struck by drivers while walking in the greater Tampa region, which includes Lakeland, increased by a whopping 45 percent over the last ten years. Furthermore, the most recent four years have been the most deadly for walkers in more than 30 years.
Although newer vehicles employ safety features that can detect passersby, such as backup cameras and motion detectors, and cities like Tampa and Lakeland are participating in Vision Zero traffic safety initiatives, pedestrian accidents are still increasing.
Some of these sobering facts about pedestrian accidents in the area may shock you, but they may also encourage you to use caution while out walking:
- Three pedestrian accidents, on average, happen each day
- Hillsborough County had the highest 2021 traffic fatality rate of large metro areas
- In 2021, 223 pedestrians died in traffic accidents
- From 2018 to 2020, 1,888 pedestrian accidents happened in the Tampa area
- Alcohol played a role in 47 percent of pedestrian traffic accidents
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC) notes that children and teens are at a higher risk for pedestrian accidents than other demographics. One in five children under 15 killed in a traffic crash in 2020 was a pedestrian. Many children don’t understand traffic laws and fail to fully comprehend the risk posed by drivers.
Did you know that 77 percent of Tampa roadways don’t have traffic control devices or crosswalks? Crosswalks and traffic signs or signals are responsible for controlling traffic flow and keeping pedestrians safe. Without these protections, people on foot run a greater risk when crossing traffic.
If you’ve been struck by a car while walking or biking in Lakeland or Tampa, contact an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer to help you file a claim for damages against the driver who hit you.
The Most Dangerous Intersections in Hillsborough County
Although a pedestrian accident can happen any time you step onto a road, some places in the metro area are more dangerous for pedestrians than others.
These are the ten most dangerous roads for pedestrians in Hillsborough County:
- The section of Brandon Boulevard from Dover Road to Falkenburg Road
- Boyette Road/Gibsonton Drive from Balm Riverview Road to I-75
- Hillsborough Avenue from Florida Avenue to Longboat Boulevard
- Fletcher Avenue from 50th Street to Armenia Avenue
- Dale Mabry from Bearss Avenue to Hillsborough Avenue
- Lynn Turner from Ehrlich Road to Gunn Highway
- Meridian Avenue from Twiggs Street to Channelside Drive
- Bruce B. Downs from Bearss Avenue to Fowler Avenue
- 50th to 56th Street from MLK Boulevard to Hillsborough Avenue
- 15th Street from Fletcher Avenue to Fowler Avenue
Other dangerous intersections in Lakeland include:
- U.S. 98 North and Griffin Road
- Memorial Boulevard and North Florida Avenue
- South Florida Avenue and Lake Miriam Drive
- U.S. 98 at Memorial Boulevard
When traveling along these streets, pay close attention to your surroundings. Wear light-colored clothing at night, and consider reflective accessories to increase your visibility. Because alcohol plays a large part in pedestrian accidents, be alert for drivers who may demonstrate weaving or dangerous motor operations, especially at night.
Even with the most diligent precautions, pedestrian accidents can still happen. When they do, remember to call the Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, experienced pedestrian accident lawyers, to represent you.
Pedestrian Accident Injuries in Lakeland: What to Expect
Following pedestrian accidents in Lakeland, many victims sustain severe injuries that may lead to lifelong complications. Because pedestrians have no protection from the vehicle that strikes them, they often suffer injuries that may result in lifelong consequences.
Common Lakeland pedestrian accident injuries include:
- Traumatic brain injury, which can impact the victim’s memory, focus, and emotions
- Spinal cord injuries, which can leave the victim suffering from substantially decreased mobility or even paralysis
- Amputations, in which the victim permanently loses a limb because of the pedestrian accident
- Broken bones, including multiple broken bones, which can interfere with the victim’s ability to work and engage in leisure activities
- Road rash resulting from the victim’s skin dragging across pavement
- Back and neck injuries, including herniated discs and muscle damage
Breaking Down the Compensation Categories in a Lakeland Pedestrian Accident Claim
After suffering severe injuries in a Lakeland pedestrian accident claim, consult The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys to learn more about the compensation you could expect for your injuries. A lawyer cannot guarantee the compensation you will recover for your injuries, since compensation for pedestrian accidents depends on multiple factors, including the insurance policy that covers the liable party. However, compensation for pedestrian accident injuries usually breaks down into these categories.
Compensation for Your Medical Bills
If you sustained severe injuries in your Lakeland pedestrian accident, you may have immense medical expenses to go along with them. Many victims struggle to keep up with payment for those medical bills, which may include everything from emergency medical treatment to a stay in a long-term care facility or in-home care as you recover following your injuries.
Keep track of all medical bills related to your Lakeland pedestrian accident injuries, since those medical bills can later form the foundation of your claim.
Compensation for Wages Lost Due to Your Injuries
Wage loss can pose an even more difficult financial problem for many pedestrian accident victims than the medical expenses and other bills that often add up following a severe accident. Often, victims struggle to get back to work following severe injuries from a pedestrian accident.
If you suffered a traumatic brain injury, for example, you may have a hard time keeping focused on your work, while spinal cord injuries may mean ongoing challenges in physical activity and normal movement.
Talk to an attorney about the wages you lost as a result of your pedestrian accident injuries, including lost sick or vacation time that you used to help provide some income during your recovery.
If your pedestrian accident injuries permanently prevent you from doing your job, you may have grounds to claim lost earning potential as part of your pedestrian accident claim. A claim for lost earning potential can help provide you with the funds you need to go back to school or to obtain a new certification that will help you obtain future employment.
Compensation for the Suffering You Faced
Pedestrian accident injuries can cause immense suffering in many ways. First and foremost, you may face serious physical suffering as you recover from your injuries. Many pedestrian accident victims struggle with ongoing physical pain, including pain that may not resolve even as time passes after the accident.
Other victims may struggle with mental and emotional anguish related to pedestrian accident injuries. An amputee, for example, may struggle with the loss of independence or the inability to perform activities he once enjoyed.
Traumatic brain injury may interfere with emotional regulation just as much as it does focus and concentration, so a victim who suffers a traumatic brain injury may have to contend with emotional difficulties alongside the physical challenges associated with the accident.
Talk to Frank and Jennifer Fernandez about how pain and suffering may influence your pedestrian accident claim.
Liable Parties in Lakeland Pedestrian Accidents
Who bears liability for a Lakeland pedestrian accident? As the victim of a pedestrian accident, you need to identify the liable party so you can move forward with a personal injury claim that will help you seek the compensation you deserve. At The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys, we may consider several liable parties as we examine your accident and determine how you need to seek compensation.
The Driver That Hit You
Ultimately, the person behind the wheel of a vehicle bears liability for any actions undertaken while behind the wheel. For drivers involved in pedestrian accidents, a variety of factors can contribute to that accident.
Driving while distracted or intoxicated can substantially increase the risk that the driver will cause a severe accident. Speeding can worsen the severity of the collision and the injuries sustained by the pedestrian. The driver may also bear liability for choosing to ignore the rules of the road, including failing to stop at the intersection or failure to yield to a pedestrian already in a crosswalk.
The Driver’s Employer
Did your Lakeland pedestrian accident involve a driver on the clock at the time of the accident? If so, the driver’s employer may share liability for the accident and for the injuries you faced.
If your accident involved a delivery driver or a commercial driver, and the company’s policies led or contributed to the accident, you may have grounds for a claim against the driver’s employer. If your pedestrian accident involves an Uber or Lyft driver, you may need to seek compensation through the insurance policy offered by the rideshare company.
A Mechanic That Recently Worked on the Vehicle
Mechanical failures can pose a particular danger to pedestrians when that failure occurs while a pedestrian tries to cross the road. Failed brakes, for example, can make it impossible for a driver to stop, while problems with the steering column can prevent a driver from safely steering away from an accident.
If a mechanic recently worked on a vehicle and certified it as road-worthy despite clear problems, or if the mechanic caused damage to the vehicle in a way that led to the accident, you may have grounds for a personal injury claim against the mechanic.
In addition, if a company put out a vehicle with damaged or inadequate parts that led to the accident, you may have a claim against the vehicle manufacturer.
Consult The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys to learn more about the liable party in your Lakeland pedestrian accident, what amount of liability each party might bear, and how to move forward with your pedestrian accident claim.
Frequently Asked Questions About a Lakeland Pedestrian Traffic Accident
Although every case is different, our clients often ask us similar questions at Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys. Here are answers to questions that you might ask our pedestrian accident lawyers.
How much is my pedestrian accident case worth?
Your settlement amount varies depending on how badly you were injured and how much it affected your ability to work afterward. Each case is different, and we will let you know what to expect at your initial consultation.
How much will it cost to have a pedestrian accident attorney represent me?
Our pedestrian accident lawyers work on a contingency basis. We charge a percentage of the settlement we win for you. We don’t get paid unless we win.
Are drivers usually at fault for pedestrian accidents?
In many cases, drivers are at fault, especially if they strike a pedestrian in a crosswalk or a guided intersection.
Who is most at risk of suffering a pedestrian accident?
Children and the elderly are the most at risk of being struck by a car. Older adults may move more slowly than younger adults, while children or adolescents may not realize the danger of crossing in certain areas.
My loved one died from injuries they sustained in a Lakeland pedestrian accident. What are my legal options?
If your family member dies because a car struck them, our pedestrian accident attorneys can file a wrongful death suit on your behalf. You’ll recover damages as you would in a personal injury case, plus recoup burial expenses and compensation for loss of companionship and consortium.
These are by no means all of the questions that you may have about your Lakeland pedestrian accident. We will address the specific questions that you have about your case in your initial free consultation.
Our Lakeland Pedestrian Accident Lawyers Can Help You
If you sustained severe injuries in a Lakeland, Florida pedestrian accident, you need an experienced Lakeland pedestrian accident attorney who can help you pursue the compensation you deserve. Contact Frank and Jennifer Fernandez at The Fernandez Firm Accident Injury Attorneys today at (863) 230-8361 for your free consultation.