With its many quaint walking paths and coastal views, Murrells Inlet is a popular place for pedestrians and bicyclists alike. Unfortunately, these individuals are at risk every time they share the road with motorists. In fact, South Carolina is known as one of the most dangerous places for pedestrians and cyclists in the entire county, consistently remaining in the top 10 most deadly states for these types of collisions. According to the South Carolina Department of Public Safety (SCDPS), an average of one pedestrian was killed every 2.2 days and one bicyclist was killed every 13.5 days in the state in 2019.
Pedestrian and bicycle accidents are particularly devastating, often resulting in catastrophic injury, permanent disability, and death. If you or someone you love was involved in such an accident, you may find yourself struggling to get back on your feet and move forward with your life.
At Joye, Nappier, Risher, & Hardin, we understand just how devastating these accidents are, which is why our pedestrian accident attorneys in Murrells Inlet fight tirelessly for the rights of victims and their families. We can help you understand your legal options and are ready to advocate for the maximum compensation you are owed.
Do Pedestrians Always Have the Right of Way?
Although it’s a common refrain, pedestrians technically do not always have the right of way. While motorists owe a greater duty of care to pedestrians than vice versa, due largely to the risk of severe bodily harm and death vehicles pose to people on foot, there are certain instances in which pedestrians must yield to cars, trucks, and other vehicles on the road.
In South Carolina, pedestrians (which includes people in wheelchairs, those pushing strollers, and those using rollerblades, skateboards, and other similar devices) are required by law to:
- Use sidewalks whenever they are present/available
- Walk on the opposing side of the road, facing traffic, as far to the side as possible when no sidewalks are present/available
- Use crosswalks (marked and unmarked) when available
- Follow all applicable traffic control devices, including traffic signals, stop signs, etc.
- Yield to oncoming vehicles whenever crossing anywhere other than a designated crosswalk, unmarked crosswalk, or intersection
That being said, motorists still have a considerable responsibility to take reasonable actions to avoid causing accidents with people on foot, as well as those traveling by bicycle. Pedestrians always have the full right of way when using sidewalks or when crossing in marked or unmarked crosswalks.
What Are the Main Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?
Most often, pedestrian accidents result from the negligent and wrongful conduct of motorists.
- Texting while driving or driving while otherwise distracted
- Aggressive or reckless driving, including speeding
- Failure to yield the right of way to pedestrians
- Driving under the influence of alcohol and/or drugs
- Failure to obey traffic laws and/or traffic control devices
- Poor visibility and unsafe road or weather conditions
- Unsafe or unlawful turns, merging, and passing
Most pedestrian accidents happen in high-traffic areas where more pedestrians are likely to share the road with motorists, and the majority of these collisions occur at night when visibility is low. However, these accidents can also happen in rural areas, as well as along highways, at all times of the day. As a pedestrian, it is important to always remain aware of your surroundings and take certain precautions to keep yourself safe.
Damages in Pedestrian & Bicycle Accident Claims
Unfortunately, even when pedestrians follow all applicable laws, they cannot always avoid being hit by large, heavy vehicles. When this happens, the pedestrians are the ones who are far more likely to suffer catastrophic or even fatal injuries, as opposed to the vehicles’ occupants.
Because pedestrian accident and bicycle accident injuries tend to be so severe, victims also frequently sustain significant physical, emotional, and financial losses. Collectively, these losses are referred to as “damages,” and victims can recover financial compensation for their damages by filing personal injury claims against at-fault drivers and other liable parties.
At Joye, Nappier, Risher, & Hardin, our Murrells Inlet pedestrian accident lawyers help victims of serious crashes seek fair compensation for their:
- Medical bills
- Future medical expenses
- Lost income/wages
- Lost future earnings
- Lost earning ability/disability
- Pain and suffering
- Emotional trauma/distress
- Loss of life enjoyment
If your loved one died after being struck by a motor vehicle, we can also assist you in bringing a wrongful death claim against the liable party. This can allow you to seek compensation for related losses, such as funeral costs and loss of income, as well as a much-needed sense of justice.
Contact Joye, Nappier, Risher, & Hardin Now for a Free Consultation
As a long-time staple of the local community, our firm is passionate about helping people in Myrtle Beach, Murrells Inlet, Georgetown County, and all of the surrounding areas in an array of complex legal matters. We have extensive experience representing victims of serious personal injury, as well as the families of those wrongfully killed. Our Murrells Inlet pedestrian and bicycle accident lawyers strive to develop meaningful relationships with each and every client, helping them not only understand the legal system but also navigate the process of healing and moving forward.
We offer complimentary consultations and contingency fees. This means that you do not owe any upfront or out-of-pocket expenses when you work with our firm. Instead, we only collect attorney fees if/when we successfully recover a settlement or verdict on your behalf.
Contact Our Offices
FILL OUT A FORM OR CALL TODAY TO SPEAK TO ONE OF OUR LEGAL PROFESSIONALS