Some drivers forget that there are more than just motor vehicles traveling around California. Sadly, pedestrians are often overlooked or considered an afterthought in terms of safety. Pedestrian accidents are on the rise, too, which means that everyone who travels by foot for any distance is at risk.
Pedestrian accidents are skyrocketing
The Governors Highway Safety Association reports that pedestrian deaths increased 21% in 2020. This data is especially unsettling considering overall traffic actually decreased in that same year. Unfortunately, this increase does follow a trend that lasted a decade. From 2009 to 2019, pedestrian deaths rose by 53%. There are several factors that play a role in this increase, including:
- Distracted driving
- Road rage
Smartphones and SUVs are a problem
Smartphones have had a devastating impact on driver focus. From 2016 to 2021, fatal collisions involving phones increased by nearly 88%. SUVs are also a threat to pedestrian safety. Pedestrians are less likely to survive an accident with an SUV compared to other vehicles because of the weight, size and especially high front-end design of these vehicles.
A pedestrian could follow every safety rule and still be at the mercy of a negligent or reckless driver. Despite so much being out of their hands, those on foot frequently suffer the most in pedestrian accidents. Recovering from such an accident or moving forward after the death of a loved one can be especially difficult physically, financially and emotionally, which is why many people choose to seek help. In California, this is most often accomplished via the careful actions of a wrongful death or personal injury lawsuit.