While they don’t get the same attention that truck accidents and other car accidents receive, pedestrian accidents are still a significant issue in Arizona. This is especially true in high traffic areas such as downtown Phoenix and college areas. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention more than 4,000 pedestrians were killed in traffic accidents across the U.S. in 2010, and another 70,000 were injured. This essentially equates to a pedestrian being hurt in an accident every 8 minutes.
Older adults accounted for nearly 20 percent of all pedestrian deaths. Also children between the ages of 5 and 9 made up a majority of children who were killed in traffic accidents. Alcohol consumption (either by the driver or the pedestrian) was a factor in 47 percent of accidents where a pedestrian was killed. Of those who lost their lives in car-pedestrian crashes, 33 percent had blood alcohol levels above .08.
Moreover, the higher faster a car would be travelling, the more likely a pedestrian would be killed.
All of this raises some important questions about pedestrian safety. What can be done? This post will identify a few things.
Be seen – Pedestrians should take time to increase their visibility; this is especially true at night. As such, wearing bright or reflective clothing and carrying a flashlight is prudent.
Cross in the crosswalk – Not only is this safer than trying to navigate traffic on a busy road, a pedestrian has more legal protection when crossing in a crosswalk.
Walk facing traffic – Walking on the sidewalk is ideal, but if one does not exist, walking towards traffic, so that you can see what is coming at you, is helpful.