Car Accident Lawyer

A deadly accident in a Walmart parking lot has raised concerns about the safety of pedestrians in these lots, according to 12 WRDW News.

Seventy-nine-year-old Martha Sweat was struck and killed in a Walmart parking lot in Columbia County in the middle of the day. The 51-year-old driver, Vickie Haas, has been charged with vehicular homicide and failure to yield in connection with the deadly crash. At the time, Sweat was in the crosswalk in front of the store that leads out to the lot. The elderly woman hit her head on Haas’ bumper and then again on the pavement. She was taken to a local hospital and later pronounced dead.

This particular parking lot was the site of another serious accident a decade ago. In that case, Kelley Beckworth was struck by a driver who didn’t see her as she exited the store. According to Beckworth, who can still point out every scar she received from the accident, after she fell over, the car’s front and then back tire went over her. Although the driver in her case wasn’t going very fast, the damage was still extensive. Beckworth needed surgery and was in physical therapy for months. To this day, she can’t turn her foot in some areas.

The news of Sweat’s death prompted Beckworth to speak out to the local media, as she views parking lot accidents as a serious safety issue that is not getting enough attention. When she was in physical therapy, she joked with her therapist about getting run over in a Walmart but was surprised to learn from the medical professional that it was a common occurrence.

In 2016, a National Safety Council survey found that two out of three drivers on average pull into a retail parking lot distracted, and 20 percent of all accidents occurred in parking lots. In addition, the survey found that 500 people die in garage and parking lot crashes each year, and another 50,000 people are injured in those types of accidents. According to safety officials, driving distracted in a parking lot at the rate of five miles per hour is just as risky as driving 50 miles per hour down the interstate.

Beckworth believes the recent parking lot death was just an accident, but she says she is still afraid of crosswalks to this day and sees dangerous behavior all the time. She will wait for several cars to go by before she tries to walk. According to the accident survivor, people need to be more mindful of the road and stop driving distracted, no matter where they are.

A driver who is distracted for just a minute can cause a tragic accident, as was seen in the case of Martha Sweat. If you have been in an accident because of a person driving while not paying attention to the road, contact an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer Denver, CO trusts about your rights and your case. You may be able to receive compensation for your losses, suffering and pain.



Thank you to our friends and contributors at Richard J. Banta, P.C. for their insight into pedestrian accident claims.