At around 4 p.m. on Aug. 17, a man attempted to cross Elysian Fields Avenue in New Orleans when a northbound Honda with a Florida license plate struck him. A witness stated that he believes that the vehicle was traveling over the speed limit and had run a red light close to where traffic comes off of the highway. He also stated that the vehicle continued at a high speed after striking the victim before turning around and returning to the scene.
Officers spoke with the passenger in the car, who stated that the driver attempted to swerve to avoid the victim, but witnesses say that no black streaks are on the pavement that would suggest an attempt to brake. Officers did not issue any citations related to this incident because the pedestrian was attempting to cross in a non-crosswalk area, according to a public information officer.
Witnesses say that the victim flew about 20 feet in the air before falling back to the pavement in the middle northbound lane. His shoes were on the side of the road, and his baseball cap was a few car lengths south of his body.
When dealing with a pedestrian accident such as this, the victim's surviving family members may file a wrongful death claim against the driver of the vehicle that struck him. Eyewitness testimony along with the results of the police investigation and autopsy report may be useful in showing that the driver was at fault in some way.
If an investigation can prove that the driver performed some illegal act that led to the accident, it could show that the driver and not the pedestrian was at fault in this incident. In this case, the major factors to investigate might be whether the driver was on his cellphone at the time of the accident and how fast he was traveling when he struck the victim.
Source: NOLA, "Pedestrian killed on Elysian Fields Avenue while crossing to head home, witnesses say ", Adriane Quinlan, August 17, 2014