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San Francisco Pedestrian Accident Attorney

Accidents Involving San Francisco Pedestrians

Just like every personal injury case, pedestrian accidents are incredibly life-threatening, especially given the vulnerability of the victims. Accidents involving San Francisco pedestrians can be deadly, and having the right legal team fighting for you is crucial. 

Our San Francisco pedestrian accident attorneys have a long-standing reputation of over 60 years in successful personal injury cases. We have won over $1.5 billion in damages for our clients who have been injured due to someone else’s actions. 

If you are a pedestrian hit and injured by a car, don’t wait; call our San Francisco law firm today at (213) 927-3700. Our pedestrian accident lawyers are available 24/7, and you can fill out our quick contact form to schedule a free consultation now. 

Pedestrian Laws in San Francisco

Pedestrian laws in San Francisco exist to protect road users and motorists alike. When individuals ignore traffic rules and regulations, the potential for hurting a pedestrian is extremely high. 

Here are some of the San Francisco pedestrian laws set in place to protect residents; 

  • Intersections wider than 25 feet can be used as crosswalks by pedestrians, except there is a “No Crossing” sign.
  • Pedestrians can use crosswalks whether they are marked or unmarked.
  • Drivers and cyclists are required to yield to pedestrians at all times. 
  • All motorists must leave all crosswalks free for pedestrians and stop behind the line.
  • It is illegal to cycle or ride motorized scooters on the sidewalk. 
  • Parking on the sidewalk is illegal.
  • The legal speed limit in San Francisco school districts is 15 MPH.
  • No pedestrian may unnecessarily stop or delay traffic while in a crosswalk.

If your rights as a pedestrian have been violated and you have sustained serious injuries, you are entitled to file a claim against the at-fault party. 

Pedestrian Traffic Safety 

Besides the laws set in place to protect pedestrian traffic in San Francisco, the city has taken some extra safety measures.

The San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) created a pedestrian improvement toolkit to assist in making it easier to walk around the city. Types of facilities that have been installed for commute improvement include;

  • Continental crosswalks
  • Painted safety zones 
  • Raised crosswalks
  • Pedestrian refuges
  • Advanced limit lines 
  • Accessible pedestrian signals 
  • Left turn safety 
  • Bulb-outs (curb extensions)

Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents in San Francisco 

Several walkable paths exist in San Francisco, making it easy for pedestrians to get around conveniently and safely. In 2020, it was named one of the top 5 most walkable cities in the U.S

Even with pedestrian safety laws and accountability for the amount of foot traffic in the city, pedestrians still get injured for many reasons. Some reasons for San Francisco pedestrian accidents include; 

  • Distracted driving
  • Drunk driving
  • Driving under the influence of drugs
  • No street lights
  • Lack of road signs 
  • Broken traffic light
  • Jaywalking
  • Unleashed dogs/animals
  • Poor road conditions 
  • Failure to yield 
  • Vehicle defects
  • Bad weather conditions

Investigating and identifying the cause of the accident will make it easier to hold the guilty party responsible. 

Recoverable Damages After a San Francisco Accident 

If a careless motorist has injured you severely or you have been involved in a pedestrian accident in San Francisco, you may be eligible to collect damages for any one or all of the following; 

  • Medical bills
  • Lost wages
  • Emotional distress
  • Rehabilitation
  • Loss of earning capacity
  • Property damages
  • Loss of consortium 
  • Legal fees

The amount of damages available to be recovered depends on the severity of the injury to the victim. You may be eligible for more financial compensation if the pedestrian accident resulted in the wrongful death of a loved one. 

How to File a Pedestrian Accident Claim

According to the statute of limitations in San Francisco, you have two years to file a pedestrian accident claim.

If you try to file a claim after the deadline, your lawsuit will be dismissed, and you will be unable to reclaim the damages you suffered. 

To file a pedestrian accident lawsuit, you will need the help of an experienced San Francisco personal injury attorney. 

An attorney will help gather proof of your accident and witness statements to strengthen your case. Our firm specializes in pedestrian injury cases and will secure you a worthy compensation. 

Liability in a San Francisco Pedestrian Accident

To prove liability in a San Francisco pedestrian accident, you will need to prove the at-fault party owed the victim a duty of care.

All drivers in San Francisco must yield the right of way to pedestrians to avoid any incidents or casualties. If a driver fails to provide their duty of care, they could be held liable for all damages caused to the pedestrian. 

In order to hold the guilty party accountable, the victim is required to present proof of the accident, such as proof of injuries, pictures/videos of the accident scene, witness accounts, and medical bills. 

A pedestrian accident attorney can help you gather all the necessary proof you need and hold the negligent driver responsible. 

Comparative Negligence

California is a pure comparative negligence state, meaning you are responsible for an accident to the degree of fault you contributed. 

If the pedestrian is partially to blame for the accident, they may still be eligible for financial compensation. However, the percentage of fault assigned to the pedestrian will reduce the total damages recovered. 


San Francisco Assembly Member Phil Ting authored a new legislation in 2023 known as the “Freedom to Walk Act.”

Assembly Bill 2147 decriminalizes jaywalking as long as it is safe to cross, except doing so will put you and others at risk of a collision. It is important for pedestrians to take reasonable care in order to avoid causing any accidents. 


It is illegal to flee the scene of the accident after hitting a pedestrian. Hit-and-run drivers can face jail time and be held financially liable for all damages. 

If you have been hit by a negligent driver who fled the scene of the accident, you can file a lawsuit for compensatory damages. Do not try to go after the fleeing driver. Instead, gather as much information as you can, like a description of the car or a license plate number. 

Let West Coast Trial Lawyers Fight for You 

Your choice of legal representation in a pedestrian accident claim can greatly impact the success of your case. Choosing a competent yet emotionally aware attorney will ease your mind as you move forward in this difficult time. 

Get in touch with a San Francisco pedestrian accident attorney from our firm, West Coast Trial Lawyers. We will ensure you get all the help you need and recover everything that you have lost.

Simply call us at (213) 927-3700 or fill out our quick contact form to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation.

Pedestrian Accident Resources by West Coast Trial Lawyers

8 Common Pedestrian Accidents

9 Pedestrian Safety Tips

California's Pedestrian Laws | CVC 21949

If a Jaywalker Gets Hit by a Car, Who Is at Fault?

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