As summer approaches, more people will opt to walk rather than drive to their destinations. Unfortunately, recent data shows that pedestrian deaths are on the rise. According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, 2015 is projected to have “the largest year-to-year increase in pedestrian fatalities since national records have been kept.”
There are several reasons for this trend, including a rise in vehicle traffic and a growing dependence on smartphones. As the economy continues to recover and more people find employment, safety experts say there will be more cars on the roads. Additionally, distracted driving continues to be a problem, with eight people in the United States killed every day due to distracted driving behind the wheel.
Tips for Pedestrian Safety
Fortunately, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of being injured as a pedestrian. One of the most important things you can do is to be aware of your surroundings. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, close to three-fourths of pedestrian deaths happen in urban areas, and more than two-thirds occur away from intersections. Data shows motorists tend to be more alert to pedestrians at intersections, where people are more likely to cross. Statistics also show that city motorists are more accustomed to pedestrians compared to rural drivers. Additionally, cities tend to be more pedestrian-friendly, with more sidewalks, crosswalks, and crossing signs.
Pedestrians should also be aware of when they are walking, as well as weather conditions at the time. The majority of pedestrian deaths happen at night, when motorists are less likely to see a person walking. Pedestrian fatalities also occur more frequently in bad weather, such as rain and fog.
If you plan to walk with traffic, also keep the following safety tips in mind:
- Obey all traffic rules and signals
- Walk in pedestrian areas, such as sidewalks, when you can
- Stay alert at all times
- Wear reflective clothing if you must walk at night
- Avoid talking on your smartphone or cell phone
- Use intersections or pedestrian crosswalks whenever possible
Experienced Mississippi Personal Injury Lawyers
At Rushing & Guice, P.L.L.C., we help individuals and families get compensation for their injuries. If you have been injured as a pedestrian, you have important rights. We can help you explore your options and get justice in your case. Call us today at (228) 374-2313 to discuss your case.