October is National Pedestrian Safety Month, a time to raise awareness of the dangers of pedestrian car accidents and how to prevent them. Unfortunately, pedestrian accidents are all too common. In 2021, over 7,300 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the United States. That’s an average of 20 pedestrians killed every day.
Pedestrian accidents can have devastating consequences for both the pedestrian and the driver. Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable to injury and death in a collision with a motor vehicle. Even a low-speed crash can cause serious injuries, such as broken bones, head injuries, and internal bleeding. In many cases, pedestrian accidents are fatal.
There are a number of factors that contribute to pedestrian car accidents. Some of the most common causes include:
- Driver distraction: Drivers who are talking on the phone, texting, or eating are more likely to miss pedestrians.
- Impaired driving: Drivers who are under the influence of alcohol or drugs are also more likely to cause pedestrian accidents.
- Speeding: Speeding increases the risk of a pedestrian accident and the severity of injuries.
- Poor road design: Some roads are designed with little or no regard for pedestrian safety. This can include roads with narrow sidewalks, poor lighting, and inadequate crosswalks.
Pedestrians can take steps to reduce their risk of being involved in a car accident. Here are some tips:
- Be aware of your surroundings: When you’re walking, pay attention to traffic and be aware of your surroundings. Avoid distractions such as talking on the phone or texting.
- Cross the street safely: Always cross the street at a crosswalk and use the crosswalk signal if there is one. Make eye contact with drivers before crossing and be sure they see you.
- Wear bright clothing: At night or in low-light conditions, wear bright clothing so that drivers can see you. You may also want to consider wearing reflective gear.
A few other tips to keep in mind are to avoid walking alone at night. If you must walk alone, choose well-lit areas and stay on main roads. Be especially careful when crossing intersections. Many pedestrian accidents occur at intersections. Be aware of your surroundings, even when you’re in a crosswalk. Drivers may not always see you, even if you have the right-of-way. Obey all traffic laws. This includes walking on the sidewalk, crossing at crosswalks, and following the pedestrian signals. By following these tips, you can help reduce your risk of being involved in a pedestrian car accident.
If you are involved in a pedestrian car accident, it is important to seek legal advice from an experienced personal injury lawyer. A lawyer can help you understand your legal rights and options, and can fight to get you the compensation you deserve. Feel free to call the lawyers at Cook, Bradford & Levy, LLC for a free consultation to discuss your pedestrian accident.
Reference: https://crashstats.nhtsa.dot.gov/Api/Public/ViewPublication/813458 (This document provides a detailed overview of pedestrian fatalities in 2021, including information on the number of fatalities, the characteristics of the victims, and the factors that contributed to the crashes.)