According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were 4,743 pedestrians killed in the U.S. in 2012 in pedestrian crashes. Of those deaths, 612 fatalities were in California. We had the most pedestrian-crash-related deaths of any state.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Administration, pedestrian traffic deaths decreased from 2006 through 2009, but then started to rise again from 2010 through 2012. There was an increase in pedestrian traffic deaths of 15 percent from 2009 to 2012. People ages 70 and over, per capita, had the highest rate of pedestrian traffic deaths.
Three states accounted for about 33 percent of all pedestrian deaths — California, Texas and Florida. Nine states has fewer than 10 pedestrian deaths.
Why was there such an increase between 2009 and 2012? One expert believes it may be because of the recession in 2008 through 2009. More people were not able to afford vehicles, gas or maintenance. Other reasons may be that the weather has been milder, there are more immigrants and seniors walking instead of driving, and more people are walking while distracted while using cellphones.
There are approaches that could reduce the number of pedestrian-car accident deaths and injuries. These include enforcing current laws, educating both drivers and pedestrians and environmental and roadway design changes.
Pedestrians who are injured or the families of those who are killed have a right to seek compensation from an at-fault party. Medical or final expenses can be high, especially when a wage earner is not able to contribute to the family finances. An experienced personal injury attorney can provide more information about pursuing compensation.
Source: Governor’s Highway Safety Administration, “Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities by State” Aug. 26, 2014