When you’re walking through Chicago, there’s a lot of traffic around you, and you are probably well aware of the fact that you could be struck by a vehicle. The one thing that gives you some solace is that most of the cars are moving at a relatively slow speed. This isn’t like getting hit on a rural road by a pickup truck going 55 miles an hour.
Don’t let that make you complacent, though. Studies have found that pedestrians can be severely injured even at far lower speeds than they may expect.
The odds of being injured
To understand how this works, let’s take a look at the odds of being injured at various speeds. The severe injury risk for pedestrians is as follows:
- 10%: 16 miles per hour
- 25%: 23 miles per hour
- 50%: 31 miles per hour
- 75%: 39 miles per hour
- 90%: 46 miles per hour
So, even if someone is just driving along at 23 MPH, likely feeling like they’re going slower than they want, there is still a one-in-four chance that you will suffer severe injuries if they hit you. By the time they get up to just 31 MPH, it’s a coin toss. A car does not have to be going at highway speeds to put you in the hospital with life-altering injuries.
If this happens to you, it’s very important to understand all of your legal options. You may be able to seek financial compensation from the driver who struck you. This is especially true if they were clearly at fault, such as if they were speeding or if they made another critical mistake.