Las Vegas is a famously bright city at night. Yet being a pedestrian at night is considerably more dangerous than during the day. According to statistics compiled by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 74% of nation-wide pedestrian fatalities in 2015 took place at night. The same report found that 76% of pedestrian deaths occurred in urban areas, and 72% happened to pedestrians who were not in an intersection. Nevada had 2.28 pedestrian deaths per 100,000 residents, placing it on the high end of that dubious statistic when compared to other states. There are several reasons why the night is especially dangerous for urban pedestrians:
- Drunk drivers are more common at night than during the day. In the NHTSA’s analysis, about 60% of pedestrian fatalities were associated with alcohol. Pedestrians themselves may also be under the influence of alcohol, which can impair judgment and reduce reaction times.
- Bright lights from buildings and other cars can, ironically, make less well-lit features of the roadway, including pedestrians, harder to see.
- Night worsens the effects of environmental factors, like rain and roadway debris, that can affect a driver’s control of a vehicle, visibility, and other factors that can contribute to accidents.
- Many drivers experience reduced acuity of vision at night. Compromised depth perception, blurry vision, and trouble with differentiating light and dark, can all reduce a driver’s ability to quickly respond to changing conditions.
When accidents happen at night, the at-fault driver may not have a clear idea of what happened. Even a driver who wasn’t under the influence of drugs or alcohol can have failed to see a pedestrian in the roadway. This can lead the two sides in the accident to have different accounts of what happened. As the driver’s insurance carrier examines the case, it may adopt the at-fault driver’s story of events as its starting point, forcing the injured person to prove the case in other ways. Today’s auto accidents tend to have a wide range of potential evidence that the plaintiff can rely upon in a legal case. Modern cars have memory. Cameras are ubiquitous, both on the car itself and around many urban spaces for security purposes. And of course, in a busy city like Las Vegas there are often other people who may be able to serve as witnesses. The attorneys at Greenman Goldberg Raby Martinez have represented clients in the Las Vegas area in personal injury and auto accident cases for over four decades. If you have been injured in an accident in Las Vegas, we can help you examine your legal options for recovering compensation. For a free attorney consultation about your case call us today at 702-388-4476 or send us a request on our contact page.