Be Street Smart: Protect Yourself Against Pedestrian Accidents
by R&I Consultants
Have you heard? Georgia is the fifth most dangerous state for pedestrians. And, as the weather gets warmer and more people take to the sidewalks and crosswalks, the risk is greater for pedestrian-related motor vehicle accidents.
According to a report on Smart Growth America, there were a total of 1,154 pedestrian fatalities in Georgia between 2003 and 2012 as a result of collisions with motor vehicles, averaging 115 each year. Over half of those deaths occurred in the Atlanta metro area, which itself comes in as the number eight most dangerous large metropolitan area for pedestrians in the nation. The annual number of pedestrian fatalities also seems to be increasing every year, with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reporting that there were 182 pedestrian deaths in 2013, the second consecutive year of rising pedestrian fatalities. For more pedestrian statistics, click here.
Many people have medical payments (Med Pay) coverage as a line item available with automobile insurance. Med Pay will pay for reasonable medical and funeral expenses incurred because of bodily injury sustained by the insured in an accident. Med Pay coverage will apply to you (as the insured) and to your passengers while occupying a motor vehicle. But did you know that as a pedestrian or cyclist, Med Pay will also cover you and your resident relatives if you are struck by a motor vehicle designed for use on public roads? Most people may not ever think about looking to their car insurance if they were hit as a pedestrian. The first thing that comes to mind is health insurance, or lack thereof, right? Med Pay actually extends from car insurance and cover these expenses. So, either way, you’re covered!
You may be thinking, “If I have health insurance, shouldn’t that cover any injuries?” It could, but potentially at a higher cost to you. Health insurance deductibles have to be met, and there are often copays. If you or your passengers are injured in your vehicle, or your or resident relative injured as a pedestrian, the Med Pay coverage can be a good stopgap to cover your health insurance deductible, removing financial stress from a time that should be about recovery.
For example, it is a very valuable coverage for a soccer mom. If you are cramming a gaggle of neighborhood kids in your minivan to drive them to sports or to carpool home from school, you do not always know what kind of health insurance the children’s parents have for them. If any injuries occur related to your vehicle, Med Pay coverage could be used towards each of those children.
And, while pedestrians can sue drivers who hit them in the crosswalk, pedestrians with Med Pay coverage receive benefits much quicker and with more reliability than a lawsuit would provide.
So, whether you are a pedestrian or a driver, be street smart and get a medical payments quote today! Call our insurance agents in Sandy Springs today at 404-459-5975.