Car accidents are very common in California and around the country. Sadly, many of those incidents involve pedestrians.
Why are more pedestrian accidents occurring?
Auto-pedestrian accidents have increased over the past few years. More people are out walking and sharing roads with motor vehicles. Some roads lack proper crosswalks or traffic lights and stop signs. Sometimes, pedestrians don’t cross at marked crosswalks, making them less visible. However, many drivers don’t take proper precautions to avoid accidents that can render pedestrians seriously injured.
Significant increase in fatalities leads to an initiative
Within the first nine months of 2021, there were 17% more fatalities stemming from accidents compared with 2020, according to the National Traffic Highway Safety Administration. More than 100 of the people killed were pedestrians. Certain roads and highways are considered particularly dangerous, which led to an initiative known as Vision Zero to be created.
Vision Zero aims to remove traffic lanes, increase bike lanes and add more crosswalks with signs and lights that aim to alert drivers to take extra care while pedestrians and bicyclists are present.
Some of these more dangerous roadways are in poorer areas where there are more people of color. Certain roads are significantly hazardous as they are used as raceways, which increases the risks of pedestrian deaths. Black and Latino residents are the ones who are more likely to be killed due to poor road conditions in these areas. Safety advocates want Vision Zero to be expanded into these areas.
The Department of Transportation has also announced a safety measure that has the goal of reducing speed and improving the infrastructure for pedestrians and bicyclists.
Advocates state that distracted driving is a huge reason behind the uptick in pedestrian deaths. Drivers who take their eyes off the road for mere seconds are more likely to strike a person crossing the street.