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It often seems as if every other block in Memphis has some sort of construction or renovation going on. Buildings are being demolished and rebuilt, sewer lines are being replaced, and derelict storefronts are being refurbished. With all this work going on, the likelihood that hazards will impede safe travel on sidewalks and pathways is higher than ever. As a result, many pedestrians find themselves crossing the street to avoid such hazards. When someone crosses the street at a point that isn’t an intersection or other explicitly legal crossing point, that action is considered jaywalking… even if the person committing a jaywalking infraction has a good reason to be crossing the street at the location they’ve chosen. Motorists don’t always anticipate jaywalkers. Too often, when someone jaywalks, an accident occurs and the victim finds themselves in need of guidance from a Memphis, Tennessee jaywalking accident lawyer from Wiseman Bray PLLC.
To many, broken or uneven pavement may not seem like a big deal. However, failure to maintain sidewalks in a clean and safe fashion can have serious consequences. A missing brick or a paving section elevated by tree roots that cases as little as two inches of gap can cause an unsuspecting pedestrian to trip and fall hard. When a pedestrian trips over uneven sidewalk, either while trying to avoid another hazard or as they are jaywalking towards a safer space, the injuries can be significant. In many cases, there is some level of strain/sprain or spinal injury. A fall can result in bulging or dislocated disks or microfractures in vertebrae. In other instances, the victim may attempt to catch himself or herself with outstretched hands, causing fractured wrists and arms or dislocated shoulders. Elderly individuals are at a heightened risk, and can even suffer serious head injuries and permanent brain damage. No matter what an individual’s injuries are, an experienced Memphis, TN jaywalking accident lawyer can help victims explore their legal options in the wake of a fall or other accident.
Property owners have a responsibility to maintain a clean and clear pathway for pedestrians. People walking along the sidewalk do not expect to encounter trip and fall hazards. However, many property owners think it doesn’t matter, or that they don’t have this responsibility. They may ignore defects in the sidewalk or pretend it is the duty of the city to maintain them. This lackadaisical attitude can be a real problem when people are injured.
After a fall caused by a sidewalk defect, the property owner may try to blame the victim, saying that they should have kept a better lookout or watched where they were going or avoided jaywalking in the first place. They may also refuse to take calls or open a liability insurance claim. In some instances, a property owner will erase camera footage or immediately repair the sidewalk in order to hide the evidence of the hazard. Unless the victim was able to immediately take photos of the place where the fall happened, their only proof may be gone. If this has happened to you, don’t panic. An experienced Memphis, TN jaywalking accident lawyer can help you explore your options, even if it may feel like you have none at the moment.
An experienced Memphis, TN pedestrian accident lawyer can help accident victims, whether they fell on the sidewalk, while jaywalking to avoid a hazard on the sidewalk or were otherwise just walking along and minding their own business. No two pedestrian accidents are exactly the same. Allow our legal team to help you assess your options in the wake of your unique accident.