It can be easy to forget that cars are not the only ones who traverse roads. But motorcycles, bicycles, skaters, scooters, and pedestrians use the roads, too. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has provided statistics from 2017 (the most recent data available) on pedestrian accidents in the United States.
What is a Pedestrian?
For the purposes of the NHTSA statistics, the word “Pedestrian” is defined as any person on foot, walking, running, jogging, or lying down who is involved in a motor vehicle traffic crash. This does not include people on roller skates, skateboards, scooters, baby strollers, etc.
Statistics on Pedestrian Accidents
According to the NHTSA, the following is an overview of Traffic Safety Facts 2017 Data:
- 5,977 pedestrians killed in traffic accidents
- A pedestrian was killed in a traffic crash on average every 88 minutes
- 16% of all traffic fatalities were pedestrian deaths
- 19% of pedestrians struck in hit-and-run accidents
- 26% of pedestrian fatalities occurred between 6-9 p.m.
- 47% of fatal pedestrian crashes involved alcohol
- 70% of the pedestrians killed were male
- 91% of pedestrian deaths were involved in a single-vehicle accident
Pedestrian Rights & Rules
Pedestrians have the right of way:
- At marked crosswalks
- On sidewalks
- On all public roadways (even highways!)
However, just because pedestrians have the above-listed rights does not mean they don’t have to follow certain rules, such as:
- Following all traffic signs and signals
- Always using sidewalks if they are available
- Being safe & responsible to themselves & others
Pedestrian Safety Tips
- Be Visible: increase your visibility, especially at night. Carry a flashlight when walking and wear reflective clothing
- Use Crosswalks: Only cross streets at designated crosswalks or intersections whenever possible
- Use Sidewalks: whenever possible, walk on a sidewalk or walking path instead of the road. If a sidewalk is not available, walk on the shoulder and face oncoming traffic.
- Avoid Technology: use electronic devices sparingly. Try not to look at your phone while walking. If you need to use your phone, stop and move to a safe place out of the way of motor vehicle traffic and other foot traffic. Be careful when using earbuds, as they can prevent you from hearing traffic.
- Avoid Alcohol/Drugs: Just as you should not use alcohol and drugs to drive, you should avoid alcohol and drugs before walking as a pedestrian. It can cause you to be distracted, impair your judgement, and slow your coordination.
If you have been injured as a pedestrian, contact the law offices of Kamper Estrada, LLP. Our experienced pedestrian accident lawyer Phoenix, AZ trusts can help you understand what sort of damages you may be entitled to and will fight to make sure you receive fair compensation for your injuries.