A number of recent pedestrian accidents in San Francisco have raised concern about the safety of San Francisco’s city streets. On June 6th, multiple pedestrians were hurt after a car accident at 17th and Potrero Avenue. A child in a stroller as well as two other pedestrians were transported to the hospital. Two people in the car were hurt and transported to the hospital as well.
On June 9th, a woman using a walker was struck and killed by the vehicle in which she had been riding. The woman, who was in her 50s, had just gotten off a paratransit van and was crossing Franklin Street at Geary Boulevard when the van accelerated and hit her, dragging her 25 feet. Police are trying to figure out whether the problem was a mechanical failure with the van, driver error, a problem with the traffic signals, or another issue. The vehicle was being driven by a contracted paratransit provider.
Also on June 9th, a pedestrian was struck and killed by a dump truck in downtown San Rafael. The accident happened around 1:15 at Third and Hetherton Streets. No details of the accident are available.
This recent spate of accidents involving pedestrians in the San Francisco area is alarming. Recently, Google was granted a patent for an adhesive vehicle front that is designed to limit the injuries of a pedestrian it strikes. If a vehicle with this type of front was to strike a pedestrian, the pedestrian would become stuck to the front of the vehicle’s hood and bumper. This would prevent a secondary blow in which the pedestrian may strike the windshield, road, or roof after an initial collision with the car’s front end. However, a Google spokesperson declined to offer more details on the product, and said that product announcements should not be inferred from patents.
Tragically, every eight minutes in the U.S. a pedestrian is injured in an accident with an automobile, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. About 5,000 pedestrians are killed annually and 70,000 more are injured in accidents with automobiles. Because of the size and speed of cars, and the lack of protection pedestrians have, pedestrians who are struck by automobiles tend to have very severe injuries that can result in life-long disabilities. Some of the most common injuries pedestrians experience after an accident are traumatic brain injuries, broken bones, internal organ damage, and death.
The majority of pedestrian accidents happen in urban areas such as San Francisco. When a pedestrian is struck by a vehicle, the chance of a fatality increases exponentially with the speed at which the person is struck. At 20 miles an hour, the chance of a fatality is five percent. At 30 miles an hour, the chance of a fatality is 45 percent, and at 40 miles an hour, the chance of a fatality is 85 percent. Even small increases in speed can make a big difference in the severity of the injuries experienced.
If you or a loved one has been struck by a vehicle while walking in the San Francisco Bay Area, call the San Francisco Bay pedestrian accident attorneys at Liberty Law at 415-896-1000 or 510-645-1000. At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty and Seth I. Rosenberg believe that anyone who is struck by an automobile should consult an attorney. Pedestrian accidents can result in lifelong medical issues, and victims should ensure they are fairly compensated after an accident. Call us today to learn more about your legal options or to schedule a free consultation on your case.