Washington, DC is a world-renowned tourist destination known for its heavy traffic and high-density urban areas. However, being a pedestrian in this bustling cityscape is often a harrowing experience. Urban planners and civil engineers have repeatedly restructured this District to accommodate motor vehicles, which means that our roads and streets often lack the basic elements of a safe pedestrian network. Despite aggressive awareness campaigns and legislative measures, the number of pedestrian injuries and fatalities in Washington, DC continues to rise each year.

District Leaders & the Vision Zero Initiative

In 2018, District leaders revived the “Vision Zero” initiative to help reduce the annual number of pedestrian injuries and fatalities across the city. Their current goal is to ban right turns on red at congested corners, update signage and pavement markings, and add protected bike lanes and “slow zones” by 2024. To show their support, DC police officers conducted an aggressive three-day enforcement blitz last October that resulted in 13,500 tickets.

While we fully support the Vision Zero initiative, we also recognize that it’s an ongoing work in progress. The pedestrian accident lawyers at Simeone & Miller, LLP have compiled this list of 10 safety tips to help you navigate the populated streets and neighborhoods of our great nation’s capital:

  1. Prepare a safe walking route in advance
  2. Use sidewalks if they are available
  3. Walk facing the traffic if a sidewalk isn’t available
  4. Obey all signs and signals
  5. Only cross streets at designated areas
  6. Stay on well-lit paths at night
  7. Wear bright colors during the day and reflective tape at night
  8. Watch for cars that are turning or backing up
  9. Avoid drugs and alcohol if you plan to go walking
  10. Do not assume other drivers see you or will stop when they should. Walk defensively.

Steps to Take After an Accident

A serious injury to the brain or spine can impact all facets of your life and prevent you from maintaining your prior standard of living. Fortunately, there are certain steps you can take to protect your claim and mitigate your injury-related debts. If you are too injured to complete these steps, contact Simeone & Miller, LLP to discuss your legal options. We can investigate your case, help you file an effective claim, and represent your interests through each phase of your legal journey.

Follow these 6 steps after a pedestrian accident:

  1. Call 911 and report your accident
  2. Take pictures of your injuries, the vehicle, and the accident scene
  3. Write down witness names and phone numbers
  4. Seek medical attention immediately, if necessary
  5. Don’t talk to the defendant’s insurance company
  6. Contact an experienced personal injury attorney

Pursue Justice & Damages

There are deadlines for when you must file a personal injury claim after being injured in an accident, or losing a loved one. While it may seem like you have a long time, it’s critical that you contact a qualified attorney as soon as possible. At Simeone & Miller, LLP, we can negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf and do everything in our power to minimize the disruption to your life, make sure you get the best medical care available and maximize your claim.