Car and pedestrian collisions in HRM are happening at an alarming frequency; it seems that every other day another incident is in the news. The number of pedestrian collisions since the beginning of 2014 is overwhelming.
Halifax Regional Police are now reporting all pedestrian collisions in an attempt to bring awareness to the problem. As well, the Crosswalk Advisory Committee made up of politicians, transportation experts, police and residents has been convened by City Council. The Committee has finalized a report that incorporated a number of recommendations including zebra stripes and crosswalk flags. The current maximum fine for a driver who strikes a pedestrian is $693.95.
Here are some things to keep in mind if you are ever involved in a car/pedestrian collision.
In a typical car accident claim involving two or more cars, the injured person bears the burden of proving that the other driver’s negligence caused the collision. In the case of pedestrian collisions, the onus is reversed by virtue of section 148 of the Insurance Act. Therefore, the driver who hits a pedestrian is deemed to be at fault until it is proven otherwise.
The driver/Defendant may allege contributory negligence on the part of the injured person. This means that the pedestrian was partially responsible for the collision. For example, if a pedestrian walks out into the street without looking or runs across the street, a court may determine that the pedestrian is partially at fault for the collision. The injured pedestrian’s claim will then be reduced accordingly. For example, if the court finds the pedestrian was 50% responsible for the collision, his/her damages award will be reduced by 50%.
Section B Accident Benefit Coverage
All Nova Scotia Automobile Policies contain mandatory Accidents Benefits coverage. If you are hit by a car while you are a pedestrian, you are entitled to Accidents Benefits coverage through the insurance policy held by the person who hit you. As of April 1, 2012, this coverage may include:
- reasonable medical and rehabilitation expenses including mileage to and from treatment (up to maximum of $50,000);
- funeral expenses up to $2,500, and some death benefits; and
- income replacement benefits if you qualify (the lesser of 80% of your wages or $250 per week – in other words $1,000 per month maximum)
In order to commence a claim for Accident Benefits you will have to complete initial paperwork in conjunction with your health care providers (family physician, physiotherapist and/or chiropractor).
Medical coverage is generally available for 4 years. Income replacement benefits continue as long as you can show entitlement.
Car accident claims are complicated. If you have been injured in any type of accident or as the result of another person’s negligence you should seek legal advice; please do not hesitate to contact us. Connect with a member of our team today to schedule your free consultation. To contact a member of our Personal Injury team call us at 902-469-9500 or 1-866-339-3400.