USA- Thehill.com writes that pedestrian fatalities are increasing each year throughout the United States. The numbers rose by over 50 percent over the last decade. The numbers jumped from 4,109 in 2009 to 6,283 in 2018. Pedestrians now also account for a higher percentage of traffic deaths. The percent of traffic deaths made up of pedestrians was seventeen percent in 2018. The last time pedestrians were dying at such levels was 1982.
According to experts, one of the main reasons for the increasing number of fatal pedestrian incidents is smartphone usage. Phones cause a deficit of attention to the road by creating a visual and cognitive distraction. Both drivers and pedestrians fall victim to the distractions presented by smartphones.
Light trucks, which include SUVs, are another part of the issue. SUVs are far more likely to lead to fatal pedestrian incidents than are smaller cars. Fatal crashes involving SUVs have gone up by about 81 percent over the course of the last decade. Deadly incidents involving smaller passenger cars also increased, but by 53 percent.
Some other reports indicate that more people walk and run now, creating additional opportunities for a crash to occur. About 75 percent of these incidents took place at night, indicating that visibility is a major problem when it comes to pedestrian incidents.
There are ways to prevent these collisions, and the report includes some strategies that can be used to lower the number of fatal crashes. One important factor is placing focus on areas where many of these incidents are taking place. Pedestrians are some of the most vulnerable road users. It is vital that officials take steps to keep them safe.
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