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Wheelchair users at higher risk of fatal injuries as pedestrians

In the event of a crash between a car and a person, it will be the pedestrian who suffers the greatest amount of injury. This is not surprising, considering the fact that people outside of vehicles are much more exposed and vulnerable than car occupants.

However, a report suggests that one type of pedestrian in particular may be the most at-risk when it comes to fatal accidents: wheelchair users.

The report was released after examining accident records between 2006 and 2012. Researchers found that pedestrians in wheelchairs were 36 percent more likely to be killed in an accident than the general population.

There are many potential reasons for the increased risk wheelchair users are faced with. To begin with, they can be even more difficult for an inattentive driver to see than other pedestrians. They are lower to the ground and can be obscured by other vehicles and obstacles on sidewalks.

Additionally, it can be more difficult for someone in a wheelchair to react to an impending crash and get out of the way. This combined with the fact that in nearly 80 percent of accidents between cars and wheelchair users, there were no crash-avoidance measures taken by a driver means that the force of impact can be much greater than in other scenarios.

The reason so many collisions end in fatality may be linked to how wheelchair users are struck and existing health concerns. Because they are in a seated position, people in wheelchairs can be struck squarely, increasing the extent of damage. Further, an existing health problem can make it more difficult for a person to recover from injuries.

Considering the amount of damage that can be suffered in these types of accidents, legal action may be your best option for getting the compensation you deserve as a victim or as someone who has lost a loved one in a crash. Discussing the legal remedies available with an attorney can prove to be a good decision.

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