Do You Need Pedestrian Tips in a Car-Dependent Culture?

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    Walking On The Sidewalk
    March 20 2020

    Pedestrian Safety Tips

    The U.S. is a car-dependent culture. Most of us drive to work, to school, and to the grocery store. We’ll probably hop into our cars even for a quick trip to the corner store. About 30% of daily trips are shorter than a mile. When traveling those short, under a mile trips, Americans drove 70% of the time. In other words, we are in our cars. A lot.

    Walking On The Sidewalk
    Walking On The Sidewalk

    But not everyone is driving all the time. Maybe you need to run across the street to pick up a newspaper. You are rushing to catch a bus or hail a cab. You’re taking your dog out for a walk. Maybe you’re enjoying a night out on the Strip. Or maybe you don’t use a car at all. There are countless reasons people, or pedestrians, walk across a street.

    Combine all those cars on the road with the number of people who are walking from point A to point B, and you have the potential for pedestrian accidents. Unfortunately, Nevada in particular is one of the most dangerous states for pedestrians.

    Nevada Pedestrian Safety Stats

    According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Nevada is the fifth most dangerous state for pedestrians.

    • January 2020 saw 24 fatalities on Nevada roads according to the Office of Traffic Safety. Half of those were pedestrians.
    • In 2015 there were a total of 73 pedestrian fatalities.
    • In 2016 there were a total of 80 pedestrian fatalities.
    • In 2017 there were a total of 100 pedestrian fatalities.
    • Between 2013 and 2017 almost 400 people died in pedestrian crashes.
    • Between 2013 and 2017 another 789 people were seriously injured.
    • Clark County saw an increase of pedestrian fatalities. Out of the 12 pedestrians killed in Nevada crashes in January 2020, 8 were in Clark County.

    National Pedestrian Safety Stats

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

    • There were 5,977 pedestrian fatalities from traffic accidents in 2017
    • Approximately 137,000 pedestrians were treated in emergency departments for traffic accident-related injuries in 2017
    • Pedestrians 65 and older made up 20% of all pedestrian fatalities in 2017
    • One in every five children under the age of 15 killed in traffic crashes were pedestrians in 2017

    Why Pedestrian Traffic Accidents Happen

    When both drivers and pedestrians fail to obey common traffic laws or to practice common sense, accidents can happen.

    According to the CDC, alcohol-impaired drivers and pedestrians are the most common reasons for pedestrian crashes. Additional risk factors include pedestrians walking in urban areas, at non-intersection locations, and at night. Below is a list of some other common reasons pedestrian traffic accidents happen.

    • Distracted drivers. Driving while on the phone or texting can distract you from noticing a pedestrian crossing the street or running into the road. It only takes a split second for you not to notice and hit a person walking in the road.
    • Speeding drivers. Driving above the speed limit is illegal no matter what. But speeding is also incredibly dangerous. When speeding, you’re less likely to notice a pedestrian about to enter the road. You’re also less likely to brake in time if you do see the pedestrian.
    • Intoxicated drivers. Driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol is one of the reasons pedestrian traffic accidents happen.
    • Weather. When drivers fail to slow down during poor weather conditions, like snow or heavy rain, and they see a pedestrian, they might not be able to brake in time. Poor visibility can also mean they miss seeing the pedestrian at all.
    • Left-hand turns. Drivers navigating a left-hand turn are paying more attention to the intersection traffic, than pedestrians crossing the street. Pedestrians risk being hit because the driver might miss them.
    • Backing-up. A common place for pedestrian accidents to happen is in parking lots or people’s homes when they back up their car out of a parking spot or driveway.

    Now that you know a bit more about pedestrian traffic accidents, we encourage you to contact our Las Vegas personal injury law firm if you have been involved in such an accident. We can protect your legal rights and help you get just compensation. With our free consultation you can present your case to us, and we can analyze the facts, and let you know how we’d represent you. Call us today for a free case review: (702) 857-6000. You don’t have to face this traumatic time alone – let the skilled attorneys at Anthem Injury Lawyers help you!

    Pedestrian Safety Tips for Pedestrians and Drivers

    In a concerted effort to reduce pedestrian fatalities, the Nevada Highway Patrol, Carson City Sheriff’s Office, and the Reno and Sparks Police Departments are zeroing in on traffic safety. The two-week-long program will run until March 15th.

    “We need to work together to reduce this trend of pedestrian fatalities,” said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Hannah DeGoey. “All too often we hear of a fatal crash involving a pedestrian, a pedestrian stepping out into the travel lane, and really our goal is to reach 0 fatalities on our roadways.”

    Pedestrian Safety Tips

    • Don’t Walk and Text. We all know distracted driving is dangerous. But so is distracted walking. When you have your head down in your cell phone you are less aware of your surroundings – including oncoming traffic. According to an Ohio State University study, about 1,500 pedestrians were sent to the emergency room for accidents related to using their cell phones.
    • Don’t Drink and Walk. Impaired driving is dangerous for obvious reasons. But if you’re out walking after using drugs or alcohol, you could also be putting yourself at risk.
    • Follow the Signs. Crosswalks and designated intersections are there for a reason. Only cross the street when the walk signal says go, or on designated crosswalks and intersections.
    • Stay Visible. At night, it can be hard for drivers to see pedestrians on the road. Sometimes street lamps go out, or there are no street lights at all. Carry a flashlight and wear reflective or bright colored clothing when walking after the sun goes down.
    • Make Eye Contact. When you are crossing the road, make eye contact with the driver, so they know you are there. Even when walking at a designated crosswalk, make sure the driver knows you are present.

    Driver Safety Tips

    • Slow Down. Stop at a red light before you turn right. Pedestrians have the right of way. Slow down and look right before turning on a green light.
    • Practice Patience. Don’t pass a driver who is stopping for pedestrians. It is against the law and it is dangerous.
    • Look for Pedestrians. When approaching an intersection or a mid-block crossing, expect to see pedestrians. Crosswalks exist at any intersection, even if there are no pavement markings. Always stop for pedestrians when they cross the street.
    • School Zone Safety. When a school crossing guard is helping children cross the road, you must wait for everyone to clear the road before driving. It is illegal for any driver to make a U-turn or pass another car in a school zone when children are present. (Senate Bill 144 )

    Experienced Las Vegas Personal Injury Attorneys

    We hope these pedestrian safety tips help you and your loved ones stay out of harm’s way. However, even the safest person can be injured just by walking across the street. If this should happen to you, you’ll need the skill and knowledge that only a top personal injury lawyer can provide. If you or a loved one are in Nevada and suffer a personal injury from a pedestrian traffic accident, you should speak to our experienced attorneys. The law firm of Anthem Injury Lawyers has a dedicated team of accident injury lawyers and staff. We are ready to help you with your injury case.

    Our office is conveniently located in Henderson. We also work with clients all over the Las Vegas Valley, including North Las Vegas, Summerlin, Spring Valley, Anthem, and the Strip.

    Contact us today for a Free Consultation at (702) 857-6000.

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