According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, an average of 445 individuals in the United States seek medical treatment in the emergency room because of pedestrian accidents, and around one person dies from injuries related to such accidents every two hours. The CDC also reports that some pedestrians are at higher risk of an accident than others, but provides some tips for staying safe while on foot on and near the roads.
Not surprisingly, teen and younger adult pedestrians are at a higher risk of injury that other groups. This could be because younger people are less aware of the dangers or that they are more distracted while walking near roadways. Children are also at risk because they are smaller, making them harder for motorists to see. Children are also usually poorer judges of speed and distance so they are more likely to dart in front of moving vehicles.
The CDC reports that men are more likely to experience injury or death in a pedestrian accident than women are. Another factor that increases the chances of a pedestrian injury or accident is if someone is drunk while walking near a road. Statistics indicate that 34 percent of pedestrian deaths and injuries in 2012 were related to alcohol.
By crossing at designated crosswalks and intersections, pedestrians can reduce their chances of injury in an accident. Teaching children and teens safe habits, such as looking both ways and walking on the appropriate side of the road, can also increase safety. Pedestrians should also pay attention to the roadway and avoid distracting activities such as texting or wearing headphones. Pokemon Go would be a perfect example of this.
Though pedestrians can increase their own safety, sometimes they can’t do anything about a dangerous motorist. Pedestrians injured in an accident caused by a negligent or at-fault motorist have options for seeking compensation to cover the cost of injuries.
Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, “Walk This Way! Taking Steps for Pedestrian Safety,” accessed Sep. 18, 2015