Pedestrian Deaths Due to Drunk Drivers Rise


We should not have to fear walking across a street, but we should always be aware of what is going on around us. Sadly, our community has experienced yet another avoidable loss, and this one was alcohol-related.

In Petaluma, a pedestrian was hit by an allegedly speeding driver and pronounced dead at the hospital. The driver of the white Mercedes delivery van was arrested after a blood alcohol content (BAC) test showed that he was above the legal limit. Losing a loved one is bad enough without also knowing that it was caused by alcohol and recklessness, and our sincere condolences go out to the surviving family members.

Pedestrian Fatality Statistics

In 2013, 4,735 pedestrians were killed in motor vehicle crashes, and 49 percent of those involved alcohol in some way. This amounts to a death every two hours and an injury every eight minutes. Deaths and injuries in these accidents are almost always caused by a person driving under the influence rather than a pedestrian walking under the influence.

Pedestrians are even more at risk of getting hit by drunk drivers because they are hard to see even when a driver is not impaired. Pedestrians do not have as much protection as other DUI accident victims who are driving in their own vehicles at the time. This makes them much more vulnerable to serious injuries and death.

As cities re-embrace pedestrian-friendly traffic designs, we see two things: The total number of pedestrians rises overall, which will equal more accidents involving them, but at the same time, the new designs make some pedestrians safer while walking.

Damages for Wrongful Death in Pedestrian Crashes

In a wrongful death lawsuit, the hardest part is trying to place a dollar amount on the life that was lost. Part of you may feel that no amount is enough, while another part is embarrassed to be asking for money at all.

These are all natural and understandable feelings, but the truth is that you need to look towards your family’s future—and the loss of your loved one’s income is catastrophic in every regard. Your family will need to pay for the medical costs that failed to save your family member’s life and his or her funeral expenses.

You can seek damages for all of the following in a wrongful death suit:

  • Medical expenses
  • Funeral expenses
  • Lost future income
  • Punitive damages

No matter the circumstances or how much trauma you think you have endured, you need to find unbiased outside help to determine what you have lost. An unattached eye will see what you may have lost and how it can affect you financially.

Free Legal Consultation with a San Francisco Wrongful Death Attorney

If someone you care about has been killed as a pedestrian in a drunk driving accident, you need to do everything you can to hold the driver responsible so that his or her recklessness cannot hurt anyone else. You will need professional legal advice, and a wrongful death lawyer at the Law Offices of J. Chrisp will be able to provide you with the best counsel available.

Please give us a call at (707) 549-8166 to schedule a free, no-obligation legal evaluation at a time convenient for you. You may also fill out the form below to have one of our associates call you at your leisure.