Pedestrian accidents are a regrettably common occurrence in Pennsylvania. According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, 4,218 people were injured and 172 were killed in pedestrian accidents in 2016.
Pedestrian-related crashes account for 14.5 percent of all Pennsylvania traffic crash fatalities, despite being just 3.2 percent of reported accidents. The majority of the state's fatal pedestrian accidents—72.1 percent—occur during the night, when visibility is significantly reduced, drivers have slower reaction times, and both motorists and pedestrians are more likely intoxicated.
These types of accidents have devastating physical and financial consequences for the both pedestrians and vehicle passengers.
Both parties are responsible for learning what they can do to prevent these potentially deadly accidents and stay safe.
Motorists can help prevent nighttime pedestrian accidents by:
- Slowing down
- Remaining alert and focused
- Avoiding distractions, such as texting
They should also use extra caution and make an effort to be aware of their surroundings, especially in school zones, residential areas, and high-traffic city centers.
Pedestrians can avoid accidents by:
- Wearing retro-reflective clothing and carrying flashlights to increase their visibility
- Walking on the sidewalk, or on the shoulder facing traffic if a sidewalk or designated path isn't available
In addition to the proverbial “look both ways,” pedestrians should also make sure to only cross the street at an intersection or dedicated crosswalk. Research shows that in Pennsylvania, most pedestrian accidents resulting in injuries and fatalities occur in areas that lack traffic control devices.
Before traveling from one point to another, both motorists and pedestrians should avoid drinking or using drugs that can impair judgment or slow reaction times. They should also avoid talking, texting, and surfing the internet on their smartphones while traveling.
Were You Hurt in a Pedestrian Accident?
Unfortunately, not all pedestrian accidents can be prevented. Even if you make every effort to be a careful, courteous driver or pedestrian, there's no guarantee that others will be as diligent about sharing the road safely.
If you were injured in a pedestrian accident caused by someone else's negligence, you may be entitled to compensation. The knowledgeable attorneys with the Accident and Injury Law Group can help you understand your rights and options after a serious accident. Contact us today to schedule an appointment for a free initial case consultation.