A person injured in a car accident will often pursue claims against the driver that caused the accident. In many instances, the person named as a defendant will attempt to evade liability by arguing that the plaintiff, in some way, contributed to causing the accident. For example, if a pedestrian lacks the capacity to walk safely and is struck by a vehicle, the driver may seek to introduce evidence of the pedestrian’s incapacitation in an effort to avoid being found at fault. The evidence that is admissible to demonstrate contributory negligence was the topic of a recent Florida ruling, in a case in which the plaintiff, who was intoxicated, was struck by the defendant driver. If you were hurt in a collision, it is in your best interest to speak to a skillful Florida car accident attorney to assess your rights.
The Evidence Admitted at Trial
It is reported that the plaintiff was walking along the side of a highway when he was struck by a car driven by the defendant. Police investigating the accident determined that the plaintiff had been drinking earlier in the day after he said he consumed two alcoholic beverages. He admitted to being “buzzed” and stated he did not know where he was going and was attempting to call a friend when he was struck. The defendant saw the plaintiff prior to the collision and was not distracted or impaired due to drugs or alcohol.
Allegedly, after he saw the plaintiff, he moved into the other lane to give him more room but struck him regardless. During the trial, the defendant admitted evidence from a toxicologist indicating that the plaintiff’s blood alcohol content at the time of the accident was .18 and that the plaintiff was impaired. Following the final verdict, the plaintiff appealed, arguing the introduction of intoxication evidence was improper.