Last week, a San Francisco Fire Department ambulance struck and injured a pedestrian. The accident occurred around 8 a.m. on a weekday morning near Howth Street and Ocean Avenue. The ambulance crew was responding to a medical emergency when the accident occurred.

The ambulance was travelling through the intersection when it hit a woman in her 20s who was crossing the street. Fortunately, she suffered only minor injuries and was transported to San Francisco General Hospital in stable condition. No one inside the ambulance was hurt.

Although it’s unclear at this time who is at fault for the accident, one thing is clear – the pedestrian is extremely lucky she did not suffer more serious injuries in the accident. Every two hours in the U.S. a pedestrian is fatally injured in an accident with an automobile.

Under state law, drivers are supposed to exercise caution in the presence of pedestrians. However, that does not happen for a variety of reasons. Drivers are more distracted now than ever. San Francisco’s streets are becoming increasingly difficult to navigate for both pedestrians and drivers, which can lead to accidents. Tourism is a huge industry in the city, and many drivers are not familiar with the roads and the legal rights of pedestrians. Although in recent years the city has recognized the dangers the city’s streets pose to bicyclists and pedestrians, and steps are being taken to help prevent injuries, there is still a long way to go to make conditions safer.

Pedestrians are the most vulnerable people on the streets, since they have no vehicle which can either protect them or take them quickly out of harm’s way. Laws are in place to protect the rights of pedestrians to help keep them safe. There are limits on when and where pedestrians can cross the streets, and it’s also the duty of motorists to use caution and stop for pedestrians whenever possible.

Those pedestrians who are most at risk include the young and the elderly. Roughly 20 percent of all pedestrian deaths occur to individuals over the age of 65. Children who are 15 and younger account for about 23 percent of all pedestrian injuries. These groups are naturally vulnerable, and it’s the responsibility of motorists to watch out for them.

Unfortunately, stopping all pedestrian accidents in San Francisco will not happen overnight. When a pedestrian injury or fatality does occur, the victim or his or her family may be able to sue the driver. If the victim is killed, family members can file a wrongful death lawsuit against the driver. Some damages that can be recovered are medical expenses, funeral costs, lost income, pain and suffering, and more. Although your financial concerns may be the last thing on your mind after the death of a loved one, it’s important that you not wait too long before seeking compensation. The more time that passes, the more difficult it can become to gather evidence and make a compelling case against the driver.

At Liberty Law, Micha Star Liberty and Seth I. Rosenberg believe that any pedestrian who is injured in an automobile accident should stand up for their legal rights against the responsible driver. If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident with an automobile, call the San Francisco pedestrian accident attorneys at Liberty Law at 510-645-1000 or 415-896-1000. We will provide you with a free consultation, and if we choose to take your case we will work hard to obtain fair compensation for you. Call us today to learn more or to schedule your free consultation.

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