Unsafe Driving Practices Contributing to Increased Pedestrian Fatalities
Despite improvements in traffic safety, pedestrian fatalities continue to rise at an alarming rate in recent years. While all other forms of traffic fatalities rose by 13% between 2010 and 2020, pedestrian fatalities rose by a staggering 54 percent during the same period. According to a new report from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), projections based on data from the first half of 2021 indicate that pedestrian traffic fatalities for the entire year will reach a 40-year high. While the number of pedestrian deaths in Florida dropped from 745 in 2019 to 716 in 2020, the preliminary calculation indicates that this number surged to 889 in 2021. Florida’s rise in pedestrian deaths from 2020 to 2021 constituted the largest year-to-year increase in the nation. Florida and Texas were the only states in the U.S. that experienced an increase of over 100 pedestrian deaths during this period.
A pedestrian struck by a car tends to suffer more severe injuries than vehicle occupants, which can result in extensive injuries, costly medical bills, and extended periods of disability. If you have suffered injury or lost a loved one in a pedestrian accident, an experienced Florida pedestrian accident attorney can explain your legal rights and advise you on strategies to protect your claim.
The GHSA report noted several factors that contributed to the rising number of pedestrian injuries and deaths in the U.S. These factors include insufficient pedestrian road crossings, the prevalence of reckless driving practices, the continued popularity of SUVs, and the need for more efforts to increase pedestrian visibility with effective lighting and other approaches.
This article highlights two specific forms of unsafe driving singled out by the GHSA report: (1) speeding and (2) alcohol impaired driving.
Speeding: The report cited the proliferation of hazardous driving practices, such as speeding, distracted driving, and alcohol/drug impaired driving. The number of pedestrian fatalities where excessive speed was cited as a factor increased by about twenty percent in a recent one-year period (from 7.2% to 8.6%). Speeding drivers pose a particularly serious threat to pedestrian safety because the risk of death increases exponentially the faster a car is traveling. Pedestrians face a ten percent risk of death when struck by a vehicle moving 23 mph, but this risk leaps to ninety percent at 58 mph. Both the pedestrian and driver have less time to react to reduce the impact of a collision or to avoid the impact entirely.
Impaired Driving: An estimated 16.1 percent of fatal pedestrian accidents in 2020 involved a motorist with a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.08 or higher. While drunk drivers cause many pedestrian deaths, a substantial number of fatalities involve intoxicated individuals traveling on foot. Approximately 31.2 percent of pedestrians in the 16 and above age-range who died after being struck by a motor vehicle had a BAC of 0.08 or above. Although alcohol-impaired pedestrians could still have a legal claim for compensation from a negligent driver, the injury victim’s alcohol-impaired status could reduce any financial recovery.
If you suffer injuries or lose a loved one in a pedestrian accident, an experienced Florida pedestrian accident attorney can evaluate your potential claim and discuss your legal rights and remedies.
If your pedestrian accident claim is handled by Montlick Injury Attorneys, our car accident attorneys will fight hard to recover the most amount of money allowable under Georgia law. If we are unable to obtain a settlement amount the is fair and just, we will be ready to take your case to trial. A favorable ruling could include a substantial jury award. Our firm has recovered Billions of dollars for our clients.
Legal Help for Car Accident Victims
Did you or a loved one sustain injuries or suffer the loss of a loved one in an accident caused by another's negligence? Protect your legal rights by calling Montlick Injury Attorneys Nationwide, 24/7, at 1-800-LAW-NEED (1-800-529-6333). Our Pedestrian Accident Attorneys are here to listen, understand your situation, and provide you with a free consultation. Our trial lawyers have recovered billions of dollars for our personal injury clients through negotiated settlements, litigation/lawsuits, settlement of lawsuits, jury verdicts, mediation, and arbitration awards.
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