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16-year-old Washington girl hit by car in crosswalk

Modern drivers face a lot of distractions. With cell phones and the internet, people are never more than a few clicks away from a world of videos, text messages, emails and news reports. While this technology has helped Washington residents in many ways, it also creates dangers for drivers. Drivers can easily be distracted, which can lead to dangerous situations for those drivers and others who happen to be near or on the roadway.

Recently, a Seattle woman claims reportedly was looking at directions while she was driving. As a result, the woman drove through a crosswalk in front of a high school and hit a 16-year-old girl. The woman claims that she did not see the victim until hitting her right after 6:00 p.m. At the time of the accident, the teenage girl was in the crosswalk and walking toward the high school. Following the accident, the girl was taken to a local hospital and treated for minor injuries.

The driver has now been cited for the incident. She has been charged with failing to yield to a pedestrian in a crosswalk and driver inattention.

Distracted drivers -- including those who are checking maps or GPS -- are dangerous. They do not have their entire focus on the roadways and can easily cause auto-pedestrian accidents. Accidents involving pedestrians, such as this recent case, are often devastating for accident victims. Pedestrians can suffer serious injuries, even when they have the right of way.

Pedestrians who are injured in a crosswalk by a distracted driver should understand their legal rights. Distracted drivers are often negligent drivers, and negligent drivers can be held financially responsible for the damage they cause. Therefore, in a personal injury suit, auto-pedestrian accident victims may be able to recover medical expenses, lost wages and other costs caused by a distracted driver.

Source: Bainbridge Island Review, "Driver cited in BHS accident," Feb. 25, 2014

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