It’s one thing to be injured while driving, but it’s another to be injured as a pedestrian. Perhaps you suffered severe injuries in West Virginia, and you’re wondering if you have a case against the driver. It all depends on how the driver was negligent.
Regardless of fault, though, pedestrian accidents are on the rise. The numbers have been increasing since 2009, and they may have reached a 30-year high in 2019. This is according to a preliminary analysis from the Governors Highway Safety Administration.
An estimated 6,590 pedestrians died
The GHSA, basing its analysis on data from the first half of 2019, estimates that 6,590 pedestrians died that year. This is 5% more than in 2018 and 60% more than in 2009, which saw 4,109 pedestrian fatalities. Once there’s complete data for the rest of 2019, the number may be different, but as it stands, it’s the highest that has been reached since 1988. By contrast, all other traffic deaths have risen 2% from 2009 to 2018.
Georgia, Florida, Texas, Arizona and California accounted for 47% of the pedestrian fatalities in 2019. Incidentally, one-third of the U.S. population is found in these five states. Florida, Hawaii and New Mexico had the three highest pedestrian fatality rates per 100,000 people while Vermont, Wisconsin and Idaho had the lowest.
SUVs and distractions among the leading factors
Though this trend in pedestrian deaths is alarming, its cause is not mysterious. The GHSA cited several factors, including a greater number of people outside, partially due to warmer weather, and an increase in drivers who use their phones while on the road. The GHSA also mentions the prevalence of SUVs and light trucks, which are more likely than ordinary cars to kill pedestrians.
A lawyer who focuses on personal injury cases
Victims of pedestrian crashes may file a claim to be compensated for their medical bills and other monetary and non-monetary losses. To see how you can move forward with a claim, you may want to see an attorney. The attorney may be able to have the crash investigated, gather evidence and then negotiate on your behalf.