Pedestrian Deaths Continue to Increase in the United States

A new report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) estimates that 6,590 persons were killed on or near United States roadways in 2019. This is the most annual number since 1988, and 5percent higher that the pedestrians’ deaths who passed away in the year the year 2018. It’s not safe for pedestrians to walk on roads. The main problem is: why?

SUVs a Threat to Pedestrians

In a period time of 10-years (from 2009 until 2019) more than 57,897 pedestrians suffered fatal injuries. While the safety of vehicle passengers has increased in recent years, pedestrian deaths are a growing proportion of deaths from collisions with cars.

“Each year, thousands of additional people are dying in pedestrian crashes compared to a decade ago,” states the report’s author GHSA Report, Richard Retting. “Following thirty years of decreasing pedestrian fatalities, there’s been a complete change in advancement. The pedestrians are at a distinct disadvantage in collisions, so it is imperative to continue taking an expansive approach to ensure the safety of pedestrians.”

The GHSA report is a continuation and expands on the findings of a Detroit Free Press and USA TODAY investigation that was conducted in the year 2018. The investigation discovered that the shift of consumers from cars for passenger use to trucks and SUVs played an important part in the harm to pedestrians. Larger vehicles that are rough, and seated higher are greater at killing pedestrians in a collision.

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) established this link in 2015, declaring the following “pedestrians are two to three times more likely to suffer a fatality when struck by an SUV or pickup than when struck by a passenger car.” Children particularly have a more risk.

The question now is: what can be done to fix it?

Causes of Pedestrian Crashes

Although the SUVs won’t be going away any time soon, nor are pedestrians, it’s crucial to determine what’s likely to increase the risk of collisions at all. The GHSA report, as well as other studies pinpoint blame in several possible areas:

  • Walking at night is a risk. It’s difficult for drivers to observe pedestrians, and pedestrians don’t wear reflective clothing or walking in areas that are well-lit to be easily visible. Additionally, both parties remain on their mobiles.
  • Temperatures are warm. As winter is fading away and spring arrives, more people are out all the night and day particularly children.
  • Alcohol. Drunk driving is a constant problem and is an important factor in numerous car crashes. The pedestrians also are at risk of being drunk while walking.
  • Distraction. Smartphones are the most frequent culprit in distraction for pedestrians and drivers.

Solutions to Prevent Pedestrian Fatalities

There are a myriad of suggestions to reduce the number of pedestrian deaths that include:

  • More effective enforcement of violations in the driving lane such as speeding and distracted driving, particularly.
  • Improvements in pedestrian infrastructure, including more mid-block crossings , as well as better defined crossings
  • New auto safety technologies such as automated emergency braking that incorporates pedestrian detection and design which limit pedestrian injuries

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