A woman attempting to cross Little Rock Rd. in Charlotte, North Carolina was struck by a police car at 5:00 AM on March 6, 2011.The woman reported to have been on her way to work, however she had been drinking at the time of the incident. She has been released from hospital.
Under North Carolina Law, both pedestrians and motor vehicles have responsibilities to each other in the use of the roadways. Under North Carolina Gen. Statute 20 -174, a pedestrian crossing a roadway at a point other than within an unmarked crosswalk has the duty to yield the right-of-way to all vehicles upon the roadway. However, under the same statute, a motorist has the duty to “exercise due care to avoid colliding with any pedestrian upon any roadway, and shall give warning by sounding the horn when necessary, and shall exercise proper precaution upon observing any child or any confused or incapacitated person upon a roadway”.
In addition, North Carolina follows the doctrine of contributory negligence. Essentially, if either party has contributed to their own injuries or damages, they are barred from recovery from the other party. Under the scenario outlined above,any recovery of damages would be unlikely. For additional information, see articles posted regarding sovereign immunity and contributory negligence.