Are pedestrians and cyclists equally to blame for accidents?
Posted on 27th June 2019 at 14:38
Whether you’re a cyclist or a pedestrian, it’s important to be road aware, and have a reasonable duty of care to other road users. You can read our blog about how to take care on the roads, here.
But, there are some cases that just fly in the face of pragmatism. However, a recent case has caused a divide in opinion, when the Court awarded Ms Brushett, a pedestrian crossing the road in London, damages, despite finding that she had been on her phone, when she stepped out, into the path of a correctly-proceeding cyclist, Mr Hazeldean.
The Court heard how Mr Hazeldean was cycling through London, approaching Ms Brushett as she crossed the road at the start of rush hour, and collided with her, both being knocked unconscious, as well as suffering some other minor injuries, such as cuts and bruises.
Witnesses to the accident state that Ms Brushett was not paying attention as she was on her phone, however the Court held that Mr Hazeldean’s actions fell below the required standard of care that a cyclist owed to pedestrians, and did not account for the fact that pedestrians can behave in unexpected ways, and Mr Hazeldean, the correctly proceeding cyclist, should therefore have been more careful.
However, the Court also considered that Ms Brushett should have been paying attention to the road, and therefore found her to be equally responsible for the accident. In law, this is called the doctrine of contributory negligence, and actually is rolled out more times than you would think.
Many people would therefore presume that this means she could not make a claim. HOWEVER, this is not the case. As your Personal Injury solicitors in Lancaster have explained in a previous blog, you can make a claim for the value of your damages, which will then be reduced by the amount that you are seen to be liable. In this case, if Ms Brushett was awarded £100,000.00 (this is only an example. You can find out what compensation you could be entitled to in our blog above), then she would receive £50,000.00.
Now, having read the many reports about this case online, it appears to have divided the nation, with many thinking that the cyclist was in the wrong, as he hit the pedestrian. Others argue that if the pedestrian had not crossed the road without looking, then there would have been no accident.
Now, as your Personal Injury Solicitors in Lancaster, we have to remain impartial about cases such as this, as we have actually represented injured cyclists, and injured pedestrians. But, if you’ve been injured in a road traffic accident, whether you’re a pedestrian, a cyclist or a driver, we’re here to fight your corner, and make sure that you get the compensation that you deserve. If you have any questions or queries, or wonder if you could be entitled to make a claim for compensation, then please feel free to contact our expert personal injury solicitors at
MG Legal – Your Local Solicitors
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