Data from the first part of 2013 suggests that a recent trend of increasing traffic fatalities for pedestrians may be reversing. In a review of accident data by the Governors Highway Safety Association there was an 8.7 percent decrease in pedestrian death in the first part of 2013 when compared with the same time period during the previous year. To be more precise, in the first part of last year there were 1,985 pedestrian deaths while the first half of 2012 involved 2,175 fatal pedestrian accidents. Data for the second half of 2013 is not yet available.
Pedestrians can be injured very seriously when they are hit by a car because they have little to protect them from the force of the impact. As a result, pedestrian accidents can be very deadly particularly when a vehicle is traveling at a high rate of speed or it is very large.
Safety officials around the country have been working hard to find ways to make the roads safer for pedestrians. In some of the country’s most dangerous states for pedestrians safety officials are taking the statistical progress with a grain of salt, saying that more evidence is needed to prove that their efforts have been effective. There are various components to making the roads safer for pedestrians, including better-designed sidewalks and cross walks that discourage speeding and reduce congestion. Federal and state officials have also been working hard to stop distracted driving brought on by the increased use of cellphones from behind the wheel.
Source: USA Today, “Pedestrian deaths drop after three-year rise,” Larry Copeland, March 5, 2014.