When a person is hurt in an accident, they may suffer serious injuries. Those injuries can prevent them from living their lives to the fullest and even getting back to their normal schedules and commitments. Washington residents who suffer harm in accidents caused by the negligence of others can often sue for their losses and seek to recover damages.
However, when a person contributes to the harm they suffer or is the actual cause of their own injuries, they may be barred from seeking a complete recovery of their losses. For example, if a pedestrian walks out in front of a vehicle because they are distracted by their smartphone, they may be partially to blame for the injuries they incur.
A special case exists, though, for children. Children are generally considered to lack the same capacity to conduct themselves safely that adults possess. As such, a small child who runs out into the street after a ball and is struck by a car may not be held liable for their own injuries because their impulsive nature prevents them from making wise choices.
When it comes to pedestrian accidents, drivers often have a heightened duty of care when operating near parks, schools, and other locations where children may be present. They should be on the lookout for kids and take extra precautions to avoid dangerous and potentially life-threatening collisions with them. When a driver fails to exercise this heightened level of care, the driver breaches his or her duty to children in the area. If this breach leads to a child being injured, the driver may be found to have caused the accident through negligence, and may be forced to compensated the child's family. To learn more about pedestrian accident liability, readers should contact an attorney.