Two Feet Versus Two Wheels: When Pedestrians Are Hit By Negligent Motorcycle Riders

At The Pittman Firm, we work with the injured and the grieving. Often our clients found themselves in a position where they were vulnerable to someone else's negligent or reckless decisions. We don't represent only one type of injured victims, instead focusing on the fundamental questions of what happened and who was at fault. While motorcycle riders are often vulnerable to the acts of reckless drivers, pedestrians are vulnerable to careless motor vehicle operators whether they have two wheels, four wheels, or even more. When a motorcycle versus pedestrian accident scenario stems from a motorcycle rider's negligence, our Panama City pedestrian attorney is prepared to help the traveler who chose two feet over two wheels.

Four Year-Old Boy Hit By Motorcycle in Walton County

Last weekend, a Walton County accident detailed by WJHG left a young boy in critical condition. At approximately 10 P.M. on Saturday, the four year-old boy from Tennessee was crossing County Road 30A in the area near Patina Boulevard, when he was hit by a motorcycle piloted by a 28 year-old man from Santa Rosa Beach. A witness reported that the boy was using the crosswalk and said the child tried to waive down the motorcycle rider to get him to stop. Responders took the young boy to Pensacola's Sacred Heart Hospital. The rider was not injured

Pedestrian Injury/Fatality Statistics

In 2012, as reported in the National Highway Traffic Safety Association's ("NHTSA") Traffic Safety Facts page released in April 2014, traffic crashes in the United States claimed 4,743 pedestrians and left an estimated 76,000 injured. Pedestrian fatalities, the highest number in the past 5 years, accounted for 14% of the year's traffic fatalities. Looked at another way, a pedestrian was hurt in a traffic accident every 7 minutes and one was killed every 2 hours.

Pedestrians vs. Motorcycles - An All-Too-Common Scenario

While we weren't able to obtain direct statistics on how many deaths or injuries stemmed from a motorcycle hitting a pedestrian, a quick Internet search shows this scenario is far more common than one might imagine. A handful of the headlines from around the country in just the past month include:

  • On August 3, 2014, a motorcycle struck a pedestrian in Denver, CO, leaving him seriously injured. The motorcyclist tore the license plate off his bike before hopping back on and leaving the scene. (initial article and update article both in Denver Post)
  • On August 15, 2014, an 88 year-old woman was struck by a motorcycle while crossing a road near her home outside of Pittsburgh, PA. She died on the scene. The cause of the crash is under investigation. (WTAE)
  • On August 20, 2014, an 89 year-old woman was killed by a motorcyclist near Oahu, HI. The incident was a hit-and-run. (Star Advertiser)
  • On August 24, 2014, a 16 year-old female was hit by a motorcycle rider while crossing an intersection near a high school in Glenview, CO. Both the teen and the 62 year-old rider were taken to the hospital and listed in critical condition. (Chicago Tribune)

Representing Pedestrians Hit by Careless Riders

While motorcycle riders are typically the more vulnerable party in traffic collisions because they lack the protections afforded by a car or truck, pedestrians are the vulnerable ones when it comes to collisions between motorcycles and those on foot. When a pedestrian is injured or killed because a motorcycle rider was negligent or even reckless, the pedestrian and/or the pedestrian's family may have a legal claim. As in other injury cases, time is of the essence because evidence can disappear and memories can fade.

If you suffered injury or lost a family member because a rider endangered a pedestrian in the Florida Panhandle region, call our office. As an experienced Northwest Florida pedestrian accident attorney, Wes Pittman represents the wrongly injured, helping them recover money damages and helping make our region safe for travelers who opt for two feet instead of two wheels (or four).

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