request a free consultation

Dallas Pedestrian Accidents – Seniors face Higher Risk of Injury or Death

Thursday, November 18, 2021

Dallas Pedestrian Injury Attorney

Statistics are clear – senior citizens face a higher risk as pedestrians than other age groups.

Approximately 25% of all pedestrian injuries and fatalities in the United States involve senior citizens.  Going back as far as 1975, No change has been seen in regards to senior citizens fatalities in pedestrian vs. auto accidents, despite a decrease in fatalities reported in regards to younger age groups.  The oldest members of our community continue to have the highest injury and death rates of all pedestrians.

North Texas has one of the fastest growing “pre-senior” population (age 55-64) in the nation and also ranks high in senior (age 65+) population growth. Over the next several decades, the 65+ population is expected to continue to grow rapidly both in number and as a share of the population.

A growing senior population brings new opportunities and challenges.

As we age, the majority of us share a common goal: to live independently and safely in our own homes and engaged in our communities for as long as possible. But without an effort to determine and change the root causes of the number of older citizens injured in Dallas Pedestrian Accidents, there will likely be even more serious injuries and deaths as the number and percentage of senior citizens increases.

Physical limitations may play a role in the this skewed statistic. Senior citizens should by all means keep up physical activity such as walking as the health and emotional benefits outweigh the risks of an auto vs pedestrian accident. Some elderly Americans have limited vision and hearing and thus may be less alert to the traffic around them.  Limitations in peripheral vision may prevent elderly ones from seeing oncoming traffic.  Additionally, overall vision changes due to the aging process may make it difficult to  judge traffic distance and speed. Pre-existing spinal and neck issues can cause some senior citizens to become permanently stooped over or without the ability to turn or lift their neck/head  to properly see traffic conditions around them.  Additionally, some seniors may have smaller physical frames making them less visible to motorists.

Drivers are often fail to take a pedestrian’s age and abilities into account.

While the driver of a motor vehicle is required in most cases to yield to pedestrians in Texas, some either just don’t see the pedestrian until it is too late, or even try to drive around the pedestrian. Texas drivers that attempt to drive around a senior citizen or time when they can safely pass, often inadequately take into consideration that elderly pedestrian may be slower in crossing a street and drivers may fail to react accordingly when slowing or braking. When a senior citizen is facing a three thousand pound (or greater) motor vehicle barreling towards them, they are often physically unable to move to get out of the way in the same manner in which a younger individual could. What is worse, while the injuries caused to an pedestrian hit by a motor vehicle are nearly always life threatening, senior citizens have the greatest difficulty surviving those injuries, take far longer to recover, and are more likely to face injuries that limit their mobility for the remainder of their lives.

Senior Citizen Pedestrian Injuries and Deaths can be prevented.

The following are examples of ways to significantly lessen the likelihood of a pedestrian being hit by a car:

  • Make eye contact as much as possible with drivers.
  • Avoid trusting the system. Many kind drivers who wave us on may lead us to ‘expect’ such behavior from all drivers. Don’t!
  • Use marked crossings if possible when crossing streets.
  • Carry a flashlight if walking in the early morning or dusk and/or use a headlamp.
  • Avoid wearing black and other dark colors.
  • Wear reflective clothing such as a reflective vest.
  • If possible, exercise or walk in places set aside for this purpose.
  • If walking on streets, use sidewalks as much as possible.
  • Elderly ones of short stature may wish to carry a lightweight, small, reflective orange flag to help makes them ‘visible’ when crossing in front of high vehicles such as buses and SUV’s.
  • When there are no sidewalks, walk facing traffic.
  • If walking for health, get a buddy. Two people are more visible than one!

The pedestrians increased ‘vulnerability’ requires motorists exercise great caution.  Yet, inattentive and careless motorists on the roadways are the primary cause of accidents involving elderly pedestrians.  Negligence and gross negligence remain the root of  senior citizen and pedestrian collisions.  If you find that you are a senior who was hit by a car, don’t allow the insurance company to bully you into feeling like the accident was your fault.

Types of Injuries in accidents involving pedestrians

Pedestrians have no protection from injury in a collision with a motor vehicle, and the injuries they suffer are often serious, catastrophic or even fatal. Common injuries include:

In the unfortunate event of an accident between a pedestrian and a motor vehicle, pedestrians will suffer severe bodily injury or even death. If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident in Dallas or other Texas city,  Board Certified Attorney Aaron A. Herbert can help. The personal injury accident lawyers at the Law Firm of Aaron A. Herbert have helped injured pedestrians or surviving family members hold negligent parties accountable for recklessness or wrongdoing. Please do not wait to contact us if you or someone you care about has been involved in a pedestrian accident in Texas. There is a specific amount of time in which you can take legal action and you do not want to forfeit your rights by waiting too long to speak with a lawyer. Contact Us today for a free, confidential consultation.


Posted by Aaron Herbert at 10:03 pm

Halloween Pedestrian Safety Guide for Dallas

Tuesday, October 19, 2021

Pedestrians are always at risk of injuries while walking around Dallas. Negligent and distracted drivers can collide with pedestrians and cause life-changing injuries. In 2017, 615 pedestrians in Texas lost their lives in traffic accidents. On Halloween, however, pedestrians may be at a greater than usual risk of accidents due to careless and belligerent drivers.

More pedestrians using the roadway can mean more opportunities for pedestrian-vehicle collisions on Halloween. Halloween should mean thrills and spooks, not real scares such as serious accidents. Use this Halloween pedestrian safety guide to keep yourself and trick-or-treating children as safe as possible this year in the city of Dallas. Speak with a pedestrian accident attorney to learn more about pedestrian law.

Common Halloween Pedestrian Risks

Halloween night can come with additional risks to pedestrian safety that are not as common on other nights of the year. Halloween is a popular holiday for late-night parties, for example, which can increase the number of drunk drivers on the road. Halloween also comes with a huge increase in the number of pedestrians in Dallas for trick-or-treating. Recognizing the most common pedestrian risks on Halloween night could help you avoid dangerous situations.

  • Drunk or drugged drivers
  • Distracted drivers
  • Speeding or reckless drivers
  • Drowsy drivers
  • Poor visibility
  • Lack of crosswalks
  • Poorly designed roadways
  • Sidewalk defects
  • Slip, trip and fall hazards
  • Criminals

Negligent, dangerous and careless drivers are the most serious risks to watch out for as a pedestrian on Halloween. Drivers can put pedestrians at serious risks of injuries by not paying attention to the road, failing to watch for trick-or-treaters or driving recklessly. A vehicle-pedestrian collision could be disastrous or fatal for the pedestrian. Children are especially vulnerable to pedestrian accidents in Dallas. You should also be on the lookout for unsafe sidewalks and criminals as a pedestrian. Walk in well-lighted areas for optimal safety.

Pedestrian and Motorist Safety Tips

As a pedestrian, take steps to increase your safety on Halloween night. Pass these tips onto your children if they are trick-or-treating this year. First, tell kids to walk, not run. Running can increase the risk of falls and of darting into traffic. Children should always stop and look both ways for oncoming vehicles before crossing a road – even if a crosswalk has given the walk signal. Carry flashlights or glow sticks to both light the way and increase your visibility to drivers. Use reflective tape on goodie bags for extra visibility.

Children should know never to enter the homes or vehicles of strangers while trick-or-treating. Send them with a responsible adult, as well as with cellphones in case of emergencies. Tailor costumes with safety in mind, making sure they are short enough not to tangle between the legs or trip the wearer. Avoid using masks or long wigs that could impede vision. Make sure children know not to eat anything until they have come home and allowed a parent to carefully inspect the goodies.

Driving on Halloween

As a driver, what you do can also impact safety – for yourself and vulnerable pedestrians. If you plan on driving on Halloween, do not plan on drinking. Arrange for a sober ride to and from your destination, especially if you are attending parties where you know the host will be serving alcohol. If you do drive, pay special attention to the road and watch for pedestrians. Thousands of kids and their guardians will flood the streets of Dallas on Halloween night for trick-or-treating and other local events. Try to avoid residential zones as much as possible.

Keep your eyes on the road and put your phone away while driving. Avoid other distractions as well, such as chatting with passengers or eating behind the wheel. Reduce your speed at or below posted limits at all times. Prepare to brake at any moment, without warning. Children in costumes may not obey pedestrian rules and may run into the road. Yield the right-of-way to crossing pedestrians whenever applicable. Stay alert and do not drive if you are feeling fatigued. It is up to you to prevent tragedies this Halloween.

Posted by Aaron Herbert at 8:03 pm

Pedestrian Crosswalk Laws in Texas

Friday, September 10, 2021

Pedestrians are the road’s most vulnerable users. They are at risk of catastrophic to fatal injuries in traffic accidents. It is a driver’s responsibility to reasonably prevent pedestrian accidents by knowing and obeying all relevant traffic laws, including crosswalk laws. Following Texas’ crosswalk laws as a pedestrian can also help you avoid a serious accident.


Pedestrian crosswalk laws in texas

How Common Are Pedestrian Accidents in Texas?

According to the Texas Department of Transportation, 717 pedestrians in Texas lost their lives in traffic accidents in 2020 alone. This was about an 8.5 percent increase from the number of deaths in 2019. Hundreds of others suffered serious injuries. Busy urban areas, such as downtown Dallas or Houston, are especially dangerous for pedestrians due to heavy vehicle traffic.

Although crosswalks are designed to provide pedestrians with safe places to cross roads, they are frequently the settings of harmful pedestrian-vehicle collisions. These collisions are often the fault of motor vehicle drivers who are speeding, driving distracted or otherwise failing to drive safely. However, pedestrians could also be at fault for failing to safely and correctly use crosswalks in Texas.

Who Has the Right-of-Way at a Pedestrian Crosswalk in Texas?

The right-of-way is the legal privilege to proceed across a roadway based on the applicable rules of the road. Texas Transportation Code Section 552.003 – Texas’ crosswalk law – states that pedestrians have the right-of-way in crosswalks that do not have traffic control signals in operation. It states that a motor vehicle operator must yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk if the pedestrian is on the vehicle’s half of the road or approaching close enough from the opposite half as to be in danger.

The crosswalk law also states that a pedestrian may not leave a curb or place of safety and enter a crosswalk if oncoming vehicle traffic is approaching quickly enough as to make it impossible for the driver to stop. Even if the pedestrian has the right-of-way, the pedestrian must remain at the curb until the road is clear or oncoming drivers have come to complete stops. Finally, it is against the law for a motor vehicle driver to pass a vehicle that has stopped to allow pedestrians to cross a roadway.

If the crosswalk does have a control signal present and in use, a pedestrian will only have the right to cross when the signal gives the “Walk” sign. With the Walk sign on, all drivers are obligated to yield the right-of-way to crossing pedestrians. When the control signal says “Wait,” or “Don’t Walk,” a pedestrian cannot legally enter the crosswalk, even if the way is clear. If an intersection has a traffic light but no special pedestrian control signal, the pedestrian may only cross the road with a green signal showing (not yellow or red).

Driver Responsibilities at Pedestrian Crosswalks

Motor vehicle drivers have certain obligations to pedestrians by law in Texas. Section 552.008 of the Transportation Code gives motor vehicle drivers a legal responsibility to always exercise due care to avoid pedestrian collisions. Due care includes driving safely and prudently, obeying speed limits (especially in school zones and residential areas), yielding the right-of-way to pedestrians when applicable, and honking their horns to warn pedestrians when necessary.

Even if a pedestrian is illegally crossing a road – such as a child darting into traffic or a pedestrian jaywalking – a driver has a responsibility to avoid a collision whenever possible. If a driver fails to fulfill this duty, the driver may be at least partially at fault for a pedestrian collision, even if the pedestrian did not have the right-of-way to cross.

Can Both Parties Share the Blame?

Yes, a motor vehicle driver and a pedestrian can share the fault for a collision at a crosswalk in Texas. If an investigation finds that both parties are partially to blame, such as a pedestrian for illegally crossing and a driver for texting and driving, any financial compensation obtained by the injured victim will be reduced by his or her percentage of fault. For more information about crosswalk accidents and shared fault, consult with a pedestrian accident attorney in Dallas today.

Posted by admin at 9:21 pm

How to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents in Dallas

Friday, April 23, 2021

Bustling cities like Dallas are especially dangerous places for pedestrians. Downtown areas have many places where pedestrians and motor vehicles intersect. In these areas, human errors such as distraction and carelessness can lead to deadly pedestrian accidents. As a driver or pedestrian in Dallas, Texas, do certain things to reduce your risk of getting into an accident.

How to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents in Dallas

For Drivers

In 2018, the Texas Department of Transportation reported 626 pedestrian fatalities – a 1.79 percent increase from 2017. Many of these fatal collisions took place in metropolitan Dallas, Austin and Fort Worth. Although drivers and pedestrians both share a responsibility to obey the law and prevent collisions, drivers must be especially careful as the party that can cause the most damage.

Slow Down

Reducing your speed can be enough to avoid a pedestrian accident. Traveling at a safe speed allows you to hit the brakes in unexpected roadway situations, such as a child running out front of your car. Always drive at or below the posted speed limit in Dallas. If you are traveling through a residential area or a school zone – or if the weather is dangerous – reduce your speed even more.

Be Alert

Distracted driving is one of the most dangerous driver behaviors. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, distracted driving took 3,142 lives in the U.S. in 2019 alone. Put your phone away, keep your eyes on the road and dedicate 100 percent of your attention to the driving task. This may allow you to react to a pedestrian in time to prevent a crash.

Yield the Right-of-Way

Although pedestrians do not automatically have the right-of-way in Dallas, yield when it is necessary. Always yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, for instance, and to pedestrians who are crossing the road when you are making a left- or right-hand turn. Even if a pedestrian does not have the right-of-way, you have a responsibility to pay attention, hit the brakes and avoid a collision when possible.

For Pedestrians

As someone who likes to walk or jog around Dallas, it is imperative to be proactive about pedestrian safety. You cannot trust drivers to always obey the law or yield the right-of-way. Take your safety as a pedestrian into your own hands to decrease your risk of getting injured in an accident.

Avoid Danger Zones

Certain parts of Dallas are more dangerous for pedestrians than others. These areas often involve intersections or areas with a lot of pedestrian traffic, such as retail centers. Do your best to avoid danger zones while walking in Dallas, such as:

  • The West End
  • West Northwest Highway near Community Drive
  • Ledbetter Drive at Bonnie View Road
  • Malcolm X Boulevard at Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard
  • Lovers Lane at Greenville Avenue

Crash statistics have shown that these areas are more prone to pedestrian accidents and deaths than other places in Dallas. Take other routes, when possible, to increase your safety.

Obey Traffic Laws

Do not assume you always have the right-of-way as a pedestrian in Texas. You have the same responsibilities as motor vehicle drivers to obey traffic laws and roadway rules. Do not jaywalk, for example, or step off the curb in front of an oncoming vehicle. Wait your turn to cross and use crosswalks.

Practice Defensive Walking

Defensive walking is a technique where you assume drivers will break the law or won’t see you, rather than assuming the opposite. Defensive walking required staying vigilant and aware of your surroundings. Do not walk while using your cell phone or otherwise distracted. Pay attention to what is happening around you, make eye contact with drivers before crossing the road and verify that it is safe to cross before stepping into the road – even if you have the right-of-way.

If you get injured in a pedestrian accident in Dallas, contact an attorney right away for a free consultation about your legal rights.

Posted by admin at 8:30 pm

What Happens If a Self-Driving Car Hits a Pedestrian?

Friday, May 8, 2020

Self-driving vehicles might be commonplace in the modern age, but that does not make them failsafe. Like all consumer products, self-driving cars can contain issues, defects, and hazards that make them unreasonably dangerous for operators and the public. Self-driving cars have already proven their potential risks with tragedies such as the first pedestrian death by a self-driving car in Tempe, Arizona. If a self-driving vehicle hits, injures or kills a pedestrian in Texas, it will most likely take a full investigation to determine fault and liability for damages.

self driving car accident

Product Liability Laws and Self-Driving Vehicles

 Texas’ product liability statute states that a manufacturer could be legally responsible for a dangerously designed, manufactured or marketed product if that product causes a consumer injury. Self-driving vehicles are no exceptions. If a self-driving car contains a defect that causes the vehicle to hit a pedestrian, the manufacturer of the vehicle and/or self-driving technology could be liable for the pedestrian’s damages. The plaintiff in this type of case, however, will have the burden to prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the vehicle contained a defect and that this defect was the producing cause of the injury or damage claimed.

  • Defects in the self-driving car’s inherent design.
  • Mistakes made during the manufacture of the vehicle or the installation of its parts.
  • Errors in the instructions or lack of adequate warnings for known risks related to the self-driving vehicle.
  • A breach of warranty by the self-driving vehicle’s manufacturer.

 In the first pedestrian death involving a self-driving vehicle, the death of Elaine Herzberg in Tempe, the Uber vehicle failed to detect the pedestrian, who was walking her bicycle across the road. The vehicle did not stop or alert the human supervisor as to the pedestrian’s presence. Uber immediately suspended its tests in Arizona after the fatal accident, and Herzberg’s family filed a lawsuit against Uber for allegedly causing the death through equipment failure. Uber reached a nondisclosed settlement with the family shortly after the crash.

Who Is Liable?

 When a self-driving car causes an accident, including one involving a pedestrian or bicyclist, multiple parties will investigate: the local police, insurance companies, lawyers and the manufacturer of the self-driving vehicle. Investigations will seek to determine the actual and proximate cause of the collision, such as a software glitch or product defect. The cause of the crash will then point to the identity of the defendant(s).


  • Vehicle manufacturer. The manufacturer of the self-driving vehicle could be liable for a defect in the car’s design and/or production that contributed to the accident.


  • Software or hardware technology vendor. If it was the autonomous software or hardware specifically at fault for the accident, the vendor that supplied the part could be liable.


  • The vehicle operator. Most self-driving cars still have human operators supervising as backup. If the operator was negligent in properly supervising or controlling the vehicle, he or she could be at least partially responsible for a pedestrian collision.


  • The pedestrian. The pedestrian could bear a portion of fault for jaywalking or crossing the road when it was illegal or unsafe to do so. Texas is a comparative negligence state, meaning partial fault under 51% will not bar a pedestrian from being able to recover damages.

The injured pedestrian or surviving family members of a deceased victim may be able to bring injury claims against one or more defendants for causing or failing to prevent a self-driving car accident in Texas. Multiple parties could be at fault depending on the details of the accident. The software company might be partially to blame for the failure to detect the pedestrian, for example, while the backup driver might also bear fault for not paying attention to the road or hitting the brakes on time. A plaintiff should hire a car accident lawyer in Dallas after a self-driving vehicle strikes a pedestrian for professional representation during this complicated type of lawsuit.


Posted by admin at 8:32 pm

Dos and Don’ts When You Witness an Accident

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Witnessing a car accident can leave you with a lot of complicated questions. You could be wondering if you could have done more to help the victims or ensure you followed the proper procedures. Consult this quick guide provided by our Dallas personal injury attorneys for some dos and don’ts for the scene.

What to do When You Witness an Accident

What To Do & What Not To Do When You Witness An Accident

DON’T feel like you must stop. The law does not require you to stop at the scene of an accident. However, most people feel it is the right thing to do. If you are one of the first people to the scene of an accident, your assistance could be imperative for victims.

DO make sure you are in a safe place after you witness an accident. If you are a pedestrian, you must stay in pedestrian areas like sidewalks. Even medians and shoulders can be dangerous if traffic continues to pass by. If you are a driver, pull your vehicle to the side of the road, ensure rescue vehicles have room to navigate, and turn on your flashers or distribute hazard markers. Stay a safe distance from the scene unless you are rendering aid to victims.

DO dial 911. If you are the first to the scene and are not sure if someone else has already called the police, dial 911 and report the accident. Even if you are unsure of the extent of the injuries of the parties involved, if vehicle damage has taken place, the police will make a report. Give as much detail as you can regarding your location and the nature of the accident.

DON’T rush into the scene. Sometimes, your assistance will be helpful, but make sure you are not in danger of injury yourself due to broken glass and sharp metal. If you choose to enter the scene and render aid to victims, do so cautiously.

DON’T offer medical assistance unless necessary. It is best to wait for emergency personnel to arrive on-scene. You may accidentally make things worse for the victim if you move him or her the incorrect way. It often takes only a matter of minutes for EMTs to arrive, and most first aid situations can wait.

DO offer other forms of assistance. Perhaps victims could use a kind word, a cell phone to call relatives or insurance companies, or a paper and pen to exchange information. Offer what you feel you would need if in the shoes of the victims.

DON’T fear liability. In the event that the help has not arrived and someone is in urgent need of first aid you know you can handle, Texas has Good Samaritan laws in place. As long as you are rendering emergency aid in good faith, you are not likely to be liable for civil damages.

DO exercise caution. Accident scenes are often tense situations. Property has occurred, and tempers and emotions can run high. While the presence of a witness may help keep emotions in check, be careful when inserting yourself into the situation. Keep your own safety in mind, primarily.

DON’T allow a driver to leave the scene without exchanging information. You do not need to physically restrain a driver – see the above note about keeping yourself safe – but it is good practice to jot down identifying characteristics and license plate numbers. If an at-fault driver attempts to leave the scene, you can remind them of the consequences of doing so and record their vehicle and license plate description.

DO cooperate with the police. If you have chosen to stop and witnessed the accident itself, provide every detail you can to the police. Stay on the scene until your statement is complete and police have released you to continue traveling.

DO give your contact information to drivers, if they ask. Your ability to help accident victims may not end when you leave the crash scene. If you are willing to give your name, contact information and a statement about the accident, injured victims may be able to use this during a personal injury claim to help them prove liability. The information you have about the accident could be critical for investigators to piece together what happened.

DO give a statement. As an eyewitness to an accident, you are in a unique position to help those involved by describing what you saw. While the law does not obligate you to stay at the scene or give a statement, telling the police or the drivers involved in the crash what you saw could help clear up questions of liability and fault. Do not be nervous about giving a statement. Simply describe what you saw.

DO pay special attention if it was a hit-and-run accident. If the accident you witnessed was a hit-and-run, your input as a witness can be even more vital. You might have seen something that enables police officers to find the culprit, such as the make or model of the at-fault driver’s vehicle, or a partial license plate number. Write down everything you can remember as soon as possible, while it is still fresh in your mind. Stay at the scene to speak to the police about what you saw. Offering your assistance to a hit-and-run victim by calling 911 and requesting an ambulance could also be important since the other driver did not stick around to do so.

DON’T speculate about fault if you are not sure who caused the accident. If you do decide to give a statement to someone at the scene of the accident, stick only to the facts as you know them. If you do not have the answer to a question, say so. Do not feel pressured to answer every question asked. Do not make guesses as to what happened or who is to blame. Answer the questions asked honestly and as completely as possible.

DO prepare to go to trial, if necessary. Agreeing to give a statement as an eyewitness could mean going to court if the accident victim’s case ends up at trial. While this is unlikely, prepare for this as a possibility if you give victims or the police your contact information. Witness testimony can be invaluable during a car accident case.

DON’T ignore a subpoena. A subpoena is a judge-issued document ordering you to appear in court. If an attorney needs you to testify about what you witnessed, he or she may subpoena you as a witness. Do not ignore a court subpoena. This is against the law and could lead to you being held in contempt of court. If this happens, you may face penalties such as fines and even jail time for ignoring the court’s requests.

DO ask for help from an attorney. Staying and helping out at the scene of an accident in Texas is an honorable and brave thing to do. Do not be afraid to intervene and render assistance to those in need. If you end up getting involved in a personal injury lawsuit, turn to a lawyer for help with the legal process.

To Learn More, Speak To A Dallas Car Accident Attorney

Overall, many people choose to stop and help when they witness a car accident. Keeping these tips in mind can help ensure you are doing what you can for the victims and police while keeping yourself safe from harm. You are not necessarily a medical professional, a mechanic, or a police officer, but Good Samaritans can provide some help and may even save a life. Just remember your own limitations and leave the tough work to the emergency personnel. To learn more speak to a Dallas car accident lawyer.

Posted by admin at 7:59 am

What are the Penalties for Jaywalking in Texas?

Thursday, June 20, 2019

When walking along certain roadways in Texas, pedestrians might not always find a crosswalk to use to safely cross the street. Logically, one might assume that an area with no crosswalks could imply that pedestrians possess right-of-way in crossing the street in any location. This is simply not true and is in fact extremely dangerous. Assuming that you possess right-of-way as a pedestrian not only leads to illegal jaywalking, but it can also cost you your life.

What is Jaywalking?

Jaywalking refers to entering a roadway in the absence of a crosswalk. It’s dangerous to jaywalk in undesignated areas because there’s no requirement for yield to pedestrians cars on continuous streets as they are at intersections. On in-town highways, for instance, cars typically remain at an accelerated speed. In this situation there are no stop signs, speed bumps, or other regulatory means to slow down a vehicle and prevent any potential pedestrian related accidents. Colliding with a car under these conditions can spell disaster for pedestrians, who are almost always lacking in bodily protection while crossing the street.

Texas Pedestrian Laws 

Texas exercises strict laws that keep pedestrians safe when entering roadways.

  • Cars must yield right-of-way to pedestrians in marked and unmarked crosswalks. White painted lines designate marked crosswalks, like those you see at busy intersections with traffic signals. Not all intersections have painted lines, though. In unmarked areas, like those including T-intersections and stop sign intersections, pedestrians still retain the right of way.
  • Cars must yield right-of-way to pedestrians when they cross entrance gaps that cause lapses in sidewalk. For example, pedestrians retain the right-of-way when they are attempting to cross an alleyway, driveway, or building that divides the sidewalk.
  • Pedestrians must abide by traffic signals when crossing a controlled intersection. This includes traffic lights and pedestrian-specific traffic lights. Pedestrians must also obey all signage pertaining to pedestrian travel. When disobeying traffic signals, pedestrians forfeit their right-of-way privileges.
  • Pedestrians must yield the right-of-way when crossing a street in a location that does not contain an intersection. This includes situations in which the pedestrian’s location is directly across the street.
  • Pedestrians must use available, marked crosswalks when available. Neglecting to use available crosswalks forfeits the pedestrian’s right-of-way.
  • Pedestrians must not enter an intersection in which a car cannot safely slow down or stop in time to yield right-of-way.

Not adhering to these rules compromises your safety and increases your liability in car accidents. According to state law, all instances in which a pedestrian crosses a roadway without an intersection counts as jaywalking.

Penalties for Jaywalking 

Jaywalking penalties aren’t nearly as severe as car-related traffic violations, though they do exist. Texas law enforcement offers to provide education to those caught jaywalking. Those that listen generally do not receive a ticket. If an individual is not willing to educate themselves on road safety by talking to the officer, they then administer a citation. Citations usually amount to between $20 and $160.

Who is Liable When a Car Hits a Pedestrian? 

The answer to this liability question lies solely in context. A pedestrian that knowingly jaywalks, or otherwise acts in a reckless manner, do not receive protection under Texas law. This is because pedestrians only possess right-of-way privileges at intersections and marked crosswalks. However, if a car collides with a pedestrian while they are lawfully crossing an intersection, the driver will most likely possess liability.

Crossing the street as a pedestrian can be extremely dangerous in Texas. State-established crosswalk rules are meant to prevent accidents, especially because they can be fatal to unprotected pedestrians. When jaywalking means risking liability and safety when facing a car accident, the wisest decision remains to wait for a crosswalk before crossing the street.

Posted by admin at 9:55 pm

What Are The Leading Causes of Pedestrian Injury?

Monday, September 3, 2018

Pedestrian injuries are still unfortunately common occurrences. In recent years, public health authorities have attempted to control the amount of pedestrian death and injury by creating more walkable urban centers, installing more crosswalks in busy areas, and doing other things to reduce the risk of accidents. However, pedestrian accidents still can and do occur daily. In fact, a recent Governor’s Highway Safety Association found that pedestrian deaths increased by 11% between 2015 and 2016. What causes these devastating occurrences? Here’s what you need to know.

Unmarked Crosswalks

Most pedestrian accidents occur at intersections. Crosswalks can help reduce the risk of being in a pedestrian accident, but unfortunately not all crosswalks have markings. Pedestrians have the right of way when crossing at an intersection, but many people fail to recognize this. Statistically, pedestrian accidents at crosswalks are more likely to occur in the summer months when people are out and about. Designating lines at crosswalks and installing appropriate traffic signals is a simple and effective way to control this type of accident.

Use of Drugs of Alcohol

DUIs are serious offenses, and ones for which the state does not have much tolerance. Conviction of a DUI can lead to license revocation and suspension, fines, court costs, community service, and more. Unfortunately, not everyone pays attention to the rules. Drivers who operate under the influence of drugs and alcohol pose a danger to themselves and others on the road, and to pedestrians. Because of delayed reaction times and sloppy judgement, pedestrian accidents involving drunk drivers are often fatal.

Distracted Driving

Texting and cell phone use while driving are nearly as dangerous as drunk driving. Motorists can plow into pedestrians because they’re too busy operating a navigation system, sending a text, or perusing Facebook to pay attention to their surroundings. Accidents due to driver inattention lead to pedestrian injuries and deaths each year.

Accidents Involving Left Hand Turns

Most pedestrian accidents occur at intersections, but they’re slightly more likely to occur when a driver is making a left hand turn at a crosswalk. The reasoning behind this is that a driver and a pedestrian are more likely to be looking in opposite directions while making their commute.

Inclement Weather Conditions

Certain conditions like rain can decrease visibility and make it more difficult for drivers to see clearly. As a result, they may not be able to see a pedestrian before it’s too late. Though inclement weather may play a role in pedestrian accidents, drivers must also know how to drive in ambient weather conditions and make adjustments as necessary. As such, a driver who hits a pedestrian in an accident will likely still be liable for his or her injuries.

Arterial Roadways

Finally, so-called ‘arterial roadways’ can make a pedestrian accident more likely. These roads help improve traffic flow on and off freeways, but they serve particular dangers to pedestrians. Many pedestrian accidents occur on these roadways, especially since bus stops are often nearby. When drivers are still driving in “highway mode,” they’re less likely to notice pedestrians, which can lead to high-speed accidents. Unfortunately, arterial roadway accidents often prove fatal to the pedestrian.

Pedestrian injuries may occur in any number of scenarios, but some urban setups and driver behaviors make them more likely. Unmarked crosswalks and arterial roadways pose a particular danger to pedestrians, as do dangerous behaviors like electronic device use, driving under the influence, and general inattention. By avoiding some of the most common scenarios leading to pedestrian accidents, walkers can reduce their risk of injury. By understanding the risks involved with driver inattention and negligence, motorists can similarly take steps to reduce the risk their behavior has on others.

Posted by admin at 6:11 pm

What Are the Dangers of Distracted Walking?

Monday, February 19, 2018

Most people are aware of the dangers of distracted driving. However, walking while distracted can be just as dangerous at the wrong time or place. In Dallas, the personal injury attorneys of Aaron A. Herbert, P.C., want to help you avoid accident and injury by making you aware of the dangers of distracted walking.

Dangers in the Path

Whether you are texting a friend, checking email, surfing social media, or selecting the next song to play as you walk, using a mobile device while walking takes your concentration away from what is coming up in front of you.

A common hazard you would easily avoid may surprise you and cause you to have an accident while walking. An uneven section of sidewalk, a limb in your path, or a small toy left unattended may cause you to trip when you fail to notice the obstacle in your path. Tripping over a hazard can result in falls that cause broken bones, back or neck injuries, or even concussion or other head trauma.

Focusing on your mobile device while walking can cause a failure to yield to bigger hazards, too, resulting in serious injuries or even death. The most obvious concern is that you may inadvertently step in front of a vehicle that does not have the ability to stop before striking you. When a car collides with a pedestrian, the pedestrian is likely to suffer severe injury. Other hazards from stepping onto the road may be failing to notice you are stepping off a curb, leading to sprained ankles from the awkward step, or falling into the street.

Injuries to Others

Distracted walking is not only a danger to you but also to those around you. Bumping into another pedestrian could cause him or her – or you – to stumble and fall, possibly resulting in injury to one or both of you. If you were to step in front of a vehicle in the street, the driver may swerve to avoid hitting you, causing a collision with a parked or moving vehicle. This can result in thousands of dollars of damage or injury to the drivers and passengers.

By walking safely, you protect yourself, other pedestrians, and those in the cars around you.

Helpful Tips to Avoid Distracted Walking

There is certainly no harm in checking your phone while you are out for a walk. However, to get the most out of your time on foot and avoid injury, it is a good idea to follow some common-sense tips to avoid distracted walking. Step out of the way of other pedestrians or cars, and stop walking before checking your phone. A phone call or text can wait the few moments necessary to find a safe place to stop and focus on the notification or phone call.

Consider using your phone’s silent or do not disturb feature while walking. In today’s culture, we tend to respond as soon as our devices notify us that we have an incoming message or phone call. By simply silencing those notifications, you can avoid a surprise distraction and focus on where you are walking.

One smart way to stay safe is to plan your music ahead of time and listen to it at a moderate volume. A lengthy playlist that doesn’t require your constant attention between songs can help you avoid checking your device often during your walk. Ensure that you are still able to clearly hear what is going on around you by keeping the volume of anything you are listening to low enough to allow ambient sounds to reach you.

Protect yourself and others from injury by avoiding the dangers of distracted walking and keeping your attention fixed on the path ahead.

Posted by admin at 10:57 pm

What Are the Right-of-Way Laws in Texas?

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The rules of the road enable drivers to anticipate the actions of others. Quite often, drivers must yield to other drivers or pedestrians before moving. The phrase “right of way” describes how you determine when to yield to another driver or pedestrian or when that other driver or pedestrian must yield to you. Right-of-way laws exist to ensure public safety on the road and to provide the smoothest flow of traffic possible.

Right-of-way laws are meant to keep drivers and pedestrians safe, so it’s important for Texans to know the state’s right-of-way laws. Understanding these laws can help prevent traffic accidents, injuries, and even fatalities, and it can help drivers avoid traffic tickets for illegal maneuvers.

Right-of-Way at Intersections

There are specific laws concerning the right-of-way at intersections in Texas:

  • When driving on an unpaved road, if you come to an intersection with a paved road, you must yield the right-of-way to traffic driving on the paved road.
  • At uncontrolled intersections, you must yield the right-of-way to any traffic already in the intersection and any traffic to the right of your vehicle.
  • When making a left-hand turn at an intersection, you must yield to pedestrians crossing the street as well as traffic traveling in the opposite lane. This also applies to making a right-hand turn. You must yield to through traffic entering the lane you wish to turn into as well as any pedestrians crossing in your path.
  • Whenever you approach an intersection at a main road from any private road, alley, or driveway, the right-of-way must be yielded to traffic driving on the main road.
  • Trains always have the right-of-way at railroad crossings. Always stop at the indicated spot. Trains are typically much wider than the tracks, and if you stop too close to the tracks, you risk being struck by a moving train. Such collisions are extremely deadly.

Emergency Vehicles

Emergency vehicles are equipped with lights and sirens to let other drivers know that they are nearby and responding to an emergency. It’s vital for other drivers to quickly ascertain the location of the emergency vehicle and pull over so personnel can reach the emergency.

In Texas, motorists must always give the right-of-way to any fire trucks, ambulances, or police vehicles. Pull over to the right as soon as possible, unless you’re within an intersection at the time. In this case, continue through the intersection and pull over to the right side of the road as soon as you can.


Every Texas driver must always give pedestrians the right-of-way, even if they aren’t crossing legally at the time. Pedestrians have no protection from oncoming traffic. As such, it’s vital for drivers to exercise caution around pedestrians and areas with heavy foot traffic. Not every intersection will have a “Walk/Don’t Walk” signal. Regardless of whether such a signal is present, a pedestrian has the right-of-way during a green light. Additionally, pedestrians have the legal right-of-way even if the light changes to red as they cross.

A good rule of thumb is to simply always yield to pedestrians, even if they’re violating the law or crossing the road illegally.

Right-of-Way Violation Penalties

As with most driving infractions, drivers found in violation of right-of-way laws can expect to receive points on their licenses. A failure to yield violation will typically result in two points and a $50 to $200 fine. A failure to yield violation that leads to an injury will result in three points and up to $2,000 in fines. Serious injuries may incur an even larger fine up to $4,000. Any right-of-way infractions committed by Texan drivers outside the state will still result in these penalties.

Posted by admin at 11:54 pm