We previously wrote about a study earlier this year that ranked the State of Florida (and the Tampa Bay area) as the deadliest when it comes to the rate of cyclist fatalities. Well, the State of Florida is back in the news! Unfortunately, it’s not good news, especially if you enjoy walking. Recent data shows that the State of Florida is also the #1 deadliest state for pedestrians.
According to a recent article with data compiled by Smart Growth America, from 2008 to 2017 there were 49,340 pedestrian deaths in the United States. That equates to 13 people per day, or one person every hour and 46 minutes. Alarmingly, the article points out that this is the equivalent of a jumbo jet full of passengers crashing, with no survivors, every single month. As for individual states, Florida leads the pack with 5,433 deaths during this same 10-year time period. Rounding out the top five states were Alabama, Delaware, Louisiana, and Mississippi.
The data is also broken down for cities. Unfortunately, Florida cities didn’t fare well in this category either. Eight of the top ten cities for pedestrian deaths were located here in Florida, with Orlando leading the pack. The Tampa-St. Petersburg area ranked ninth.
The question is Why are there so many pedestrian deaths? Surprisingly, according to the data, it is not because people are walking more, or because there are more vehicles on the road. In fact, data for each only slightly changed over the 10-year span. Instead, the blame is placed on our streets, which have, and continue to be designed for the high speeds of vehicles over the safety of pedestrians or those on bikes. Based on this data, it is more important than ever to take the proper precautions when walking.
Pedestrian Safety Tips
The most important thing you can do while walking is to BE AWARE of everything that is going on around you. Today’s technology can make it very enjoyable to go for a walk while listening to your favorite music, or even reading your texts and emails. Distractions, however, are not just something that drivers should avoid. Pedestrians should also avoid unnecessary distractions. Both drivers and walkers must look out for each other. Walking or driving while distracted can lead to serious injuries or death.
Here are some additional safety tips that can easily be used on your next walk.
If a sidewalk is available, walk on the sidewalk. If there is no sidewalk, walk as close to the left side of the street facing traffic.
Always walk facing traffic.
Cross all roads at a designated crosswalk or at intersections or street corners.
Stop and look both ways before crossing a street. Look left, right, and left again to ensure no traffic is approaching. Never dart out into a street.
Be mindful of, and obey, all traffic signals.
Don’t just look for approaching thru traffic, watch out also for any turning traffic.
Wear bright clothing.
When walking at night, wear reflective clothing or strips, and carry a flashlight.
Look out for driveways.
If possible, walk with a friend.
These are just a few tips you can use to protect yourself while walking. If you have been injured in a pedestrian accident, call an experienced Riverview personal injury attorney at SouthShore Injury Attorneys to help you recover the compensation you deserve.
If you have questions about your Florida accident case, you can download our Free Reports:
which are available on our website, or you can click the link provided. You can also contact us at (813)419-3866 to talk directly to a Riverview personal injury attorney now.