Traveling by foot is the healthier option, but it’s not always the safer option. Pedestrians are involved in 13 percent of vehicle-related fatalities, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Drivers are legally responsible for controlling their vehicles while on the road, yet the majority of pedestrian accidents are caused by a pedestrian’s actions (or inaction). Age plays a factor in pedestrian accidents, as people who are over the age of sixty-five and children who are under the age of fifteen make up 34 percent of pedestrian injuries and 27 percent of pedestrian fatalities.
The majority of pedestrian accidents are avoidable. Both pedestrians and drivers should learn the biggest causes of pedestrian accidents to avoid injury or harming others. Keep on reading to learn more.
1. Unmarked Crosswalks
Intersections are a hotspot for pedestrian accidents. If you’re a pedestrian, only cross the street if there’s a signaled crosswalk. Walk on clearly marked pedestrian pathways around parking lots. Don’t walk around parked cars. A driver can be backing out of a parking spot at any moment, and they may not see you.
2. Improper Lane Use
Although most pedestrian accidents happen on the roads, pedestrians run the risk of an accident while they’re walking on a sidewalk. Bicyclists who ride on the sidewalk can strike a pedestrian. In the worst-case scenario, a bicyclist who’s riding on the sidewalk can push a pedestrian into traffic. It’s important to always walk with your head up to remain cautious of both cars and bicycles.
3. Left-Hand Turns
Unfortunately, signaled crosswalks aren’t always safe, and you still must look in every direction before you cross the street. Pedestrians are three times more likely to be struck by cars turning left than by vehicles turning right. Accidents related to left-hand turns usually occur because both drivers and pedestrians are busy looking in opposite directions. A driver might be busy negotiating the intersection, while a pedestrian might only be looking straight ahead.
4. Quiet Cars
As hybrid cars and battery-operated vehicles climb in popularity, these cars are more likely to hit pedestrians than their gas-consuming counterparts. Although these quiet cars are ideal for not causing a ruckus in your neighborhood, they can be dangerous for pedestrians since most pedestrians detect oncoming traffic with their ears rather than their eyes.
Silent cars can especially be harmful to people with visual impairments since these people mostly rely on their hearing. If you drive a quiet car, you must pay extra attention to avoid harming a pedestrian. The risk of hitting a pedestrian from a silent car jumps to over 50 percent in residential areas because stops and turns are more frequent, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
5. Dark Clothes
While wearing black clothing is always in style, it’s wise to avoid wearing black clothes if you plan on walking at night. After the sun sets, plan on wearing brighter colors so drivers can see you; this safety tip is critical in areas with little to no street lighting. Carry a flashlight with you.
Both drivers and pedestrians must work together to decrease road accidents. Always be aware of your surroundings, whether you’re on a sidewalk or the road.
If a negligent driver recently struck you, you should work with a personal injury lawyer. Contact Flickinger Sutterfield & Boulton today to get the compensation you deserve.