Skip to Content

How to Avoid a Pedestrian Accident

February 28, 2022 | Category: Pedestrian Accidents | Share

Recently, there have been a few news stories involving the tragedies of an individual walking along Colonial Boulevard, a man attempting to cross US-41 north of Evergreen Road and another man in his 40s walking on Palm Beach Boulevard. These incidents are just a few examples of victims of fatal pedestrian accidents in the Fort Myers area. Unfortunately, these types of accidents are far too common. While there are steps pedestrians can take to reduce their risk of being hit, it is becoming much more difficult for them to keep themselves out of harm’s way based on some drivers’ actions.

Ways Drivers Can (and Should) Avoid Pedestrian Accidents

In the vast majority of cases, pedestrian accidents result from driver negligence. Florida law requires all drivers to exercise caution behind the wheel—and this includes being mindful of pedestrians. Despite this, however, drivers continue to make careless mistakes, and these mistakes are responsible for thousands of pedestrian accidents in Florida each year.

Below, our Fort Myers pedestrian injury attorney discusses some of the steps that drivers in Florida can (and should) take to avoid causing pedestrian accidents.

1. Slow Down When Driving in Pedestrian Areas

From crosswalks in downtown Fort Myers to school zones in local neighborhoods, drivers should always slow down when approaching areas where pedestrians may be present. Whenever there is a chance that a pedestrian could suddenly and unexpectedly enter the road, drivers need to err on the side of caution.  

2. Avoid Driving Distractions

Driving distractions – including cell phone use and texting – are among the most common causes of pedestrian accidents. Texting while driving is illegal in Florida because of the risks it presents for pedestrians and other motorists.  

3. Observe All Road Signs

From school crossing signs to signs warning of “children at play,” drivers must observe all road signs at all times. Even if it seems unlikely that pedestrians may be around due to the weather or time of day, taking the risk simply isn’t worth it.

4. Come to a Complete Stop

Too often, drivers approach intersections with no intention of coming to a complete stop. They make their decision to roll through before observing their surroundings. This is an extremely dangerous approach, and drivers who are not prepared to stop will often hit pedestrians who have the right of way.

5. Never Try to Rush or Scare a Pedestrian

No matter how slowly a pedestrian may be moving, and regardless of whether a pedestrian has the right of way, under no circumstances should a driver try to rush or scare someone who is walking in the roadway. Even if a driver has no intention of actually hitting a pedestrian, it only takes one slip or unexpected turn of events to trigger a serious or fatal collision.

6. Never Drink and Drive

Our Fort Myers pedestrian injury attorney knows that drinking and driving is always dangerous, but it can be especially dangerous when pedestrians are around. Consuming alcohol impairs drivers’ cognitive, visual and manual abilities, and this combination of effects significantly reduces their ability to identify and avoid high-risk scenarios.

7. Remember that Pedestrians Aren’t Always Visible

Even if no pedestrians are visible, this doesn’t necessarily mean that no pedestrians are around. Street signs, utility poles, trash cans, mailboxes and other items can obscure drivers’ views of pedestrians, and children may be too short to be seen in front of a car or in a driver’s rearview mirror.

Some Steps Pedestrians Can Take to Reduce Their Risk of Being Hit

Given the risks negligent drivers present, pedestrians are encouraged to do their best to protect themselves when walking on or near public roadways. Some safety tips pedestrians can use to reduce their risk of being hit include:

1. Always Look Both Ways Before Crossing

Pedestrians should always look both ways before crossing any road. This is true even when crossing at an intersection controlled by a stoplight and crosswalk signal. If a driver is distracted or drunk, the fact that you have the right of way won’t prevent the driver from hitting you.

2. Cross as Swiftly and Safely as You Can

Once you enter a crosswalk, you should cross the road as swiftly and safely as you can. Do not slow down or stop in the middle of the road unless it is absolutely necessary to do so. Also, pedestrians should never stop in the middle of a road to confront a dangerous or reckless driver.

3. Do Not Assume Drivers Will Obey the Law

Unfortunately, our Fort Myers pedestrian injury attorney is well aware that pedestrians cannot assume that drivers will obey the law. Speeding, running red lights and stop signs, texting while behind the wheel, and driving under the influence are all common violations that lead to pedestrian accidents. As a pedestrian, you are encouraged to do your best to be responsible for your own safety, which means not making any assumptions that could end up putting you in a dangerous situation.

4. Stay in Designated Pedestrian Areas

Walking in the road and crossing outside of a crosswalk can be very dangerous.  Pedestrians should generally seek to avoid such actions whenever possible. If there is a sidewalk, pedestrian lane or crosswalk available, using it will reduce your risk of being hit by a dangerous driver.

5. Pay Attention to Your Surroundings

Similar to drivers, pedestrians are encouraged to pay attention to their surroundings at all times. Never enter a roadway without looking—even if you don’t hear any cars coming. A car may be approaching faster than you expect, or you might not be able to hear an approaching electric vehicle. That said, always check for cars; and, when in doubt, make the cautious decision to keep yourself safe by waiting a little longer to cross, if necessary.

Hire an Experienced Fort Myers Pedestrian Injury Attorney 

Fort Myers pedestrian injury attorney Randall L. Spivey represents individuals and families in pedestrian accident cases in Fort Myers and throughout Florida. If you have been seriously injured or a loved one has been killed, we encourage you to contact Spivey Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, P.A. for a free, no-obligation consultation. To find out if the driver is responsible for your family’s losses, call 239-337-7483 or 888-477-4839 or contact us online today.

Contact Us


Spivey Law Firm Logo Spivey Law Firm 13400 Parker Commons Blvd.
Fort Myers, Florida 33912

(239) 337-7483

Free Consultation