Accidents can happen anytime, anywhere around Houston. And those responsible can be anyone; a reckless drunk driver or a pillar of the community who happens, for whatever reason, to not be paying full attention.

Regardless of the circumstances, the injuries that can result, especially if a car strikes a pedestrian, can be significant. Accountability can be achieved in a number of different ways. In some instances, civil claims for personal injury may be appropriate. Victims should always consult with an attorney after a car accident to understand their rights and options.

Whether such an action might be called for in connection with one recent accident in Houston may be something that is being looked at now. It involved a pedestrian being run down by Police Chief Charles McClelland as he was headed to work on Sept. 4.

A video of the accident, made available by the chief himself, shows the man well into the crosswalk when the chief’s car makes a left turn and strikes him. The impact looks devastating, but according to official reports, the victim suffered only minor injuries. He was taken to the hospital, was checked out and released.

At a news conference this week, McClelland said he would be taking a 1-day suspension without pay, by order of Mayor Annise Parker. He says the penalty is appropriate considering that he simply failed to see the man in the crosswalk, who was crossing legally on a green light. In addition, McClelland said he will take a defensive driving course.

There’s no word about whether a suit might be being considered.

Source: KHOU.com, “Houston police chief suspended for auto-pedestrian accident,” Michelle Homer, Sept. 19, 2013