At some point during the day most of us in Oradell are pedestrians, even if we are simply crossing the street or walking in a parking lot. This puts us at risk of being hit by a car. Pedestrian accidents in the United States are on the rise, putting many people at risk of injury or death.
The Governors Highway Safety Association reports that in 2020 over 6,700 pedestrians lost their lives after being struck by a car. This is an estimated 5% uptick from the number of pedestrian deaths in 2019. This is despite the fact that there were fewer cars in on the road in 2020 compared to 2019. Moreover, preliminary data reports that 2021 has also seen a spike in the number of pedestrian fatalities. This is in line with recent trends. Fatal pedestrian accidents have risen 46% over the past 10 years while other types of motor vehicle accidents only rose 5% during that same period.
Why the rise in pedestrian fatalities?
There are several reasons that may explain the rise in pedestrian fatalities. Our nation’s population is getting older, meaning that there are elderly pedestrians who are more apt to be killed rather than injured if struck by a car. In addition, after World War II, roadways in many cities were designed to emphasize the speed motorists can travel rather than pedestrian safety.
Also, there are more SUVs and pick-up trucks on the roads these days. These vehicles weigh more than sedans and have higher front ends meaning they hit a pedestrian with more force than a sedan would in similar circumstances. Moreover, many newer vehicles have safety features such as back-up cameras and lane-departure signals. This may lull drivers into a false sense of security and may not check carefully for pedestrians in their vicinity when driving.
Pedestrian crashes are often due to negligence
Pedestrian accidents often occur because the driver involved was negligent. All drivers have a duty of care to drive reasonably under the circumstances. If this duty is breached and the breach is foreseeable and caused the pedestrian to suffer damages, the pedestrian may want to consider whether to pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the driver.