Imagine driving on the freeway late at night when, suddenly, a pedestrian walks across the highway in front of you. When you are driving at highway speeds, it could be impossible not to hit the walker. That’s what happened to a semi-truck driver near Jackson, Michigan.
Pedestrian accidents can be catastrophic, particularly at high speeds. When pedestrians try to cross the freeway it is often fatal. Walking on Michigan freeways is illegal, but that doesn’t mean it never happens.
Recently, police in Leoni Township responded to a late-night accident: a tractor trailer had struck a pedestrian on I-94 near the US-127 interchange.
The accident left police baffled. The victim didn’t live nearby, nor did the police find any abandoned or broken-down vehicles nearby. A blood test didn’t reveal any drugs or alcohol in his system. An autopsy has been ordered, but that may not reveal why he was walking on the freeway.
Without the protection of the a vehicle’s frame, seat belts, or air bags, any impact with a vehicle can severely injure a person. High speeds and a large vehicle just add to the force of the collision.
When the pedestrian stepped out in front of a semi-driver on the freeway, it was a recipe for disaster. The truck driver had limited ability to avoid accidents like this. It was the right near midnight, and traffic was traveling at high speeds. Police report that the semi driver tried to swerve to avoid the pedestrian, but couldn’t do so safely.
Any time a pedestrian is hit by a vehicle, he or she will be able to file a claim against a no-fault insurance company for benefits. If the pedestrian has a no-fault policy herself, she can file the claim with that company, even though she wasn’t in the insured car at the time.
Even if the pedestrian has never driven a car or had reason to have car insurance, he can still be covered. This happens a lot when children are struck while playing in the street. The injured pedestrian can file a claim with a household relative’s plan, the driver’s plan, or the insurance provider of the owner of the vehicle that hit him. When all else fails, Michigan has established a process for pedestrians and passengers to be covered under an “assigned claim”- which assigns the injured person to one of the state’s insurance providers in rotation.
There should never be a case when a a person struck by a vehicle, or her family in a fatal pedestrian accident, is left without compensation for her injuries. Even when a wrongful death lawsuit isn’t an option, no fault benefits should cover medical and death expenses.
A pedestrian accident is tragic, but it should not financially ruin a family. The attorneys at Christensen Law represent the victims of pedestrian accidents and make sure their needs are met. If you or someone you know has been struck by a vehicle, contact Christensen Law today for a free consultation.