Pedestrians and Cyclists Face Death on South Carolina Roads
South Carolina- Over 900 cyclists died on South Carolina roads within the last six years, according to POSTANDCOURIER.com. The death toll has made South Carolina one of the deadliest places to be a pedestrian or cyclist in the United States.*
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association, South Carolina ranks sixth in per capita pedestrian deaths. The report also indicates that pedestrian fatalities are rising, with reports of 6,227 pedestrian deaths nationwide last year, the highest number in 30 years. The alarming number of people killed while trying to walk or bike on the road has led to safety advocates, law enforcement officers, and politicians advocating for road safety and pushing for changes that could help curb the number of traffic accidents, aimed at pedestrians, that occur each year.
Law enforcement officers point out that most of these tragic accidents are easily preventable. Captain David Singletary of the North Charleston Police Department commented, “What if they’d have taken the extra five minutes and walked 100 feet down the road and crossed at this well-lit crosswalk.” “This person would still be alive today. They’d still be with their family.”
Some of the recommended solutions to prevent these tragedies include improvements to infrastructure. The addition of protected bike lanes and fixing issues with intersections that are considered dangerous are two ways in which safety advocates are hoping to cut down on the number of people killed on the roads in South Carolina. Unfortunately, many of the projects that would help increase safety on the road are quite costly. Better infrastructure will take time to achieve.
Experts say that education to the public is important as well because many of these accidents are the result of people taking unnecessary risks such as walking in the road at night or crossing large multi-lane roadways outside of crosswalks. Reducing the number of people killed on the roads will likely be a combined effort.
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