Ottawa Pedestrian Accidents Lawyers

Ottawa is a pedestrian city where citizens travel by foot or bicycle for leisure and employment.  Unfortunately, many motorists disregard pedestrian safety and drive distracted or recklessly.

Whether you are struck by a tourist, Uber driver, or a local Ottawa driver, you deserve compensation for your injuries. At Auger Hollingsworth, our lawyers are dedicated to protecting your rights and helping you obtain the fair compensation you deserve. The moment we receive your call, our knowledgeable attorneys guide you through the process of filing a claim and remain by your side until your case is resolved. 

Ottawa Pedestrian Accidents Lawyers 2

What to do if you were involved in a pedestrian accident?

Pedestrian accidents often occur without warning. One moment you may be on your way to work or to grab a cup of coffee. The next, you are lying on the pavement waiting for an ambulance. If you are the victim of a pedestrian accident in Ottawa, Ontario, it is vital to your health, as well as any subsequent legal case, that you follow these steps:

  • Get the medical attention you need —  Shock and adrenaline can mask the pain of a serious injury. If you are struck by a motor vehicle, seek medical care immediately. 
  • Insist that the police attend the scene — Being struck by a motor vehicle is a serious matter. Even if you suffer minor injuries, police should be called to the scene to investigate — a drunk or reckless driver is a danger to others as well. 
  • Obtain the driver’s name, license plate number, and insurance information — If possible, write down the driver’s name, plate number, and insurance information. You can use your phone to take photos of the scene and any injuries you may have.
  • Call YOUR OWN insurance company to report the accident — As soon as you are healthy enough to do so, call your insurer and tell them about the accident. This will not affect your rate and is vital to your insurance claim and/or legal case. 
  • Get advice from a personal injury lawyer — Second to seeing a doctor, consulting an Ottawa injury lawyer is the most important step you can take after a pedestrian accident. Your attorney can quickly review your case, protect your rights, and help you obtain fair compensation. 

A broken leg or traumatic brain injury can result in long-time pain, disability, and rehabilitation. If your injury was caused by the careless or reckless actions of another person or entity, we can help you seek justice.

Crosswalks vs. Crossovers

Before January 1, 2016, Ontario law treated crosswalks and crossovers the same: Motor vehicles were required to stop at their half-portion of the road if a pedestrian was present. Thus, if a car pulled up to a crosswalk or crossover while a pedestrian was crossing, the driver was required to stop until the pedestrian crossed in front of the vehicle and was safe across the other half of the crosswalk/crossover. 

However, after January 1, 2016, the law changed. Today, when approaching a crossover with pedestrians actively walking, vehicles must come to a complete stop and remain as such until the pedestrians are safely across. The same applies to crosswalks whenever a crossing guard is on duty. 

These are the primary differences between crosswalks and crossovers in Ontario:

  • Crosswalks are used at traffic lights and stop signs and are clearly marked pedestrian walkways. Pedestrian crosswalks have signals such as,  “Don’t Walk” or “Walk,” or a hand symbol. 
  • Crossovers are also clearly marked pedestrian walkways, but they can appear anywhere in the city. Generally, they have signage for vehicles rather than pedestrians. Many appear as flashing yellow lights, typically with an “X” on them. Regarding crossovers:
    • It is unlawful for drivers to pass a vehicle already stopped at a pedestrian crossover.
    • It is unlawful for drivers to pass a moving vehicle that is within 30 meters of a crossover.

Keep in mind that as a pedestrian you must apply common sense when safely using crossovers. And remember, pedestrians, do not always have the right of way. According to the Highway Traffic Act, “No pedestrian shall leave the curb or other place of safety at a pedestrian crossover and walk, run or move into the path of a vehicle that is so close that it is impracticable for the driver to stop”.

No-Fault Accident Benefits

If you are injured in a pedestrian accident with a vehicle, you may be entitled to compensation by seeking Statutory Accident Benefits (SABS) under your no-fault auto insurance policy. Even if you do not have automotive insurance, you may still be able to obtain compensation by filing a claim through the driver’s policy, the Motor Vehicle Accident Claims Fund, or a family member’s policy.

Depending on the extent of your injuries, you may be entitled to the following SABS accident benefits:

  • Income replacement benefits — If your injury prevents you from working, you may receive compensation for your lost salary. 
  • Non-earner benefits — Intended for people who were not working when the accident occurred and are now unable to live a normal life as a result of their injuries. 
  • Medical and rehabilitation benefits — You may receive compensation for any number of reasonable medical expenses such as rehabilitative treatment including physiotherapy, psychological therapy, or occupational therapy, or prescription medication.
  • Attendant care benefits — If you qualify for assistance, you may receive compensation to cover the cost of hiring an aide or personal support worker.
  • Housekeeping benefits — Depending on your injuries, you may be unable to maintain daily responsibility or housekeeping. SABS can help you find help.
  • Caregiver benefits — Should your injuries require long-term disability care from a live-in nurse, you can seek compensation under SABS. 

Remember, under Ontario’s Statutory Accident Benefits law, pedestrians can seek compensation under their own no-fault auto insurance policy if they are injured by a motor vehicle. 

Ottawa Pedestrian Accidents Lawyers

Proving Liability for a Pedestrian Accident

Establishing liability in an Ottawa pedestrian accident can be tricky, especially when the accident occurs outside of pedestrian safety zones like crossovers and crosswalks. Since motor vehicle drivers are capable of inflicting grievous harm upon pedestrians, they must prove they are not at fault.  Nonetheless, pedestrian accident cases can be difficult and it is best to proceed only after consulting with a skilled injury attorney.

Contact experienced Ottawa pedestrian accidents lawyers

With a national reputation and proven track record of success, Auger Hollingsworth is Ottawa’s premier pedestrian accident law firm. To schedule a free, no-commitment case assessment, call +1 (613) 233-4529 or contact us online. 

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