In New York City you will see plenty of pedestrians. One of the perks of big city life can be the fact that most places are highly walkable. Walking can be an efficient way to travel and help save money as well as be a way to get exercise too. Being a pedestrian, however, is not without its dangers. Pedestrian accidents are far too common and can end with tragic results. Here, we will detail some of the main causes of pedestrian accidents in the hope that both pedestrians and motor vehicles alike can avoid them.
What are the Main Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?
Distracted driving is, with little surprise, one of the most common causes of pedestrian accidents. Being in the bustling city and with technology being an ever-present distraction, pedestrians often bear the brunt of unparalleled levels of distracted driving. There are countless reasons a driver may be distracted while driving. A driver may be eating while driving, changing radio stations, talking to a passenger, or looking at a phone or other handheld device. Whatever the reason for the distraction, pedestrians can easily go unnoticed by an unaware driver.
Pedestrians are also commonly involved in accidents with drivers making left-hand turns. While the driver may be paying careful attention to avoid oncoming traffic and make a clear turn, the driver may not be paying quite so close attention to a pedestrian’s presence in a crosswalk across that turn. Because of this oversight, pedestrians get struck by vehicles making quick left-hand turns to avoid oncoming traffic.
Other driving violations, such as speeding and driving while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, also commonly cause pedestrian accidents Speeding reduces a driver’s ability to quickly stop and narrows the reaction time window overall. Unfortunately, not only does speeding increase the risk of a pedestrian accident, but it also makes the force of impact much stronger, often leading to fatal consequences.
Driving while intoxicated also places a heightened risk on pedestrians. Intoxicated drivers have slowed reaction time and impaired judgment. This combination can spell tragedy for pedestrians and drivers alike.
It is not uncommon, however, for pedestrians to play a role in causing a pedestrian accident. Pedestrians who walk while distracted can step out into oncoming traffic all too easily, mistakenly assuming all was clear. Pedestrians can also increase the odds of a pedestrian accident by jaywalking, although pedestrians are also commonly struck within crosswalks, surprisingly enough.
Pedestrians can help keep themselves safer out there by remaining aware of their surroundings. Bright clothing and being as visible to drivers as possible can also help a great deal. Assuming that a car does not see you can save your life as a pedestrian. There are also things that drivers can do to keep pedestrians safe. For instance, drivers can refrain from engaging in reckless driving behaviors such as distracted driving, driving under the influence, and violating other traffic laws such as failure to yield and speeding.