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Is the Pedestrian always innocent?

Tuesday, 28 January 2014, Categories Latest News | Personal Injury Updates

Each case will be determined on it's facts

Is the Pedestrian always innocent?

Last year a case of Pursoty v Vaghani & Clarke Construction Security Limited came before the High Court.

The Facts

In this case the pedestrian was crossing a three lane one way street. She said that she had checked and as she saw no traffic approaching started to cross.  As she crossed she continued to check the road but when she reached the third lane a van travelling about 25-30mph unfortunately hit her. 

There were 2 pedestrian crossings nearby that she did not use.

The driver said that the pedestrian had stepped out unexpectedly and quickly from behind 2 stationary HGV’s and he braked immediately.

Unavoidable Collision

The Judge in this instance favoured the driver indicating that if the road was clear as the pedestrian alleged then she would have seen the vehicle.   More importantly the Judge said that as the pedestrian stepped out in driver’s path, a collision was unavoidable and that it would have been imposing an “unrealistic and unreasonably high standard” to hold that the driver should have been travelling slower to account for the fact that the pedestrian might negligently step out in front of him where there were 2 pedestrian crossings nearby.

The Judge found that the accident was the pedestrian’s fault.

Experts View

Although this is not a good case for pedestrians, each case will turn on its facts. Veitch Penny has successfully acted for many pedestrians who have been hit by vehicles as they cross roads.

Where the pedestrain is a child, extra care as a driver must be taken.  Catherine Rosewell of Veitch Penny acted for a young girl who was hit by a car as she ran across the road. In that instance the driver who had a clear view failed to notice the girl and her friend at the crossing and made no attempt to slow down. The young girl sustained head injuries and successfully claimed compensation from the driver’s insurers.

How we can help...

If you have been involved in an accident then please contact us on 01392 344800 or use our contact us page to see how we can help.


Catherine Rosewell

Partner | Office: Crediton | Phone: 01363 772244 | This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. | View Profile >

Catherine Rosewell

Areas of Specialism

Disputes and Litigation | Personal Injury

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