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Maples, Nix & Diesselhorst

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Standing With You

Many of the accidents that happen every day are due to people being distracted or negligent. No driver should have to be reminded they assume responsibility for their own safety, as well as their passengers’ and others on the road. Too many, though, think it is themselves against the world out there. And too many bikers and pedestrians think they are protected by laws. Even if they are in some cases, it pays to remember the graveyard is full of people who had the right of way.

If everyone does their part to promote safety, it may be possible to avoid many accidents. Particularly when it comes to sharing the road, there are certain things that everyone using our roads should make conscious efforts to do.

Drivers

Drivers have the greatest chance of causing harm in a pedestrian car accident. Considering this, it is critical that drivers know and abide by the state traffic laws. These laws are in place to promote the safety of everyone, and the chances of an accident may increase when someone violates the law. This may be something as seemingly insignificant as driving 5 mph over the speed limit, or as serious as running a red light.

It is not enough for drivers to follow the law. They should also drive defensively. In other words, when driving, drivers should be driving for themselves and the other drivers and pedestrians around them. In some instances, drivers can avoid instances by compensating for the improper actions of another party.

Pedestrians

Though in some instances pedestrians have the right of way, this is not always the case. Pedestrians should be aware of traffic laws as well. Using sidewalks whenever possible, walking against traffic and using designated crosswalks are ways pedestrians can keep themselves safe.

Just as distracted driving can be dangerous, so can distracted walking. Pedestrians should be alert as they enter traffic and stay off of their electronic devices when possible.

Cyclists

As the weather warms up, more cyclists are entering the road again. Being vigilant and compensating for the missteps of other parties on the road is key. Particularly when around cars backing up or exiting street parking, cyclists should watch out for careless motorists.

In any accident, those who sustain injuries due to another’s negligence may be eligible for compensation.