While walking is recommended as an easy way to get exercise, walkers face certain perils, particularly if they are near the flow of traffic. According to the National Highway Safety Association (NHTSA), more than 6,200 pedestrians died in 2019, representing one death every 85 minutes.
A leisurely walk presents serious dangers
Fatalities remain far too high. Staying safe and aware of your surroundings is vital with simple steps, literally and figuratively. The NHTSA offers a variety of tips for pedestrians to avoid serious injuries that result from accidents with motor vehicles.
- Never presume that drivers see pedestrians; make eye contact and wear bright or protective clothing based on the time of day
- Follow the rules of the road, including adherence to signs and signals
- Remain on sidewalks or walk while facing traffic as far as possible if no sidewalk exists
- Avoid the use of electronic devices where eyes and ears are focused more on a smartphone than the surroundings, creating deadly and dangerous distractions
- Cross streets where car operators expect, specifically at crosswalks or intersections, looking both ways at all times
- Well-lit areas are a good substitute if a crosswalk or intersection is not available
- Look out for cars entering or backing up out of driveways and parking lots
- Do not walk while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
While pedestrians can be proactive in ensuring their safety, negligent drivers who are distracted or drunk can still cause serious accidents. The physics of a large motor vehicle colliding with a person out on a daily walk is a dangerous, life-changing, and deadly combination.
Following an accident, the help of a personal injury attorney can help in recovery while holding the inattentive and reckless driver accountable.