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Pedestrian Accidents Archives

October: The National Pedestrian Safety Month

Posted by Trent Kelly on October 14, 2022
October: The National Pedestrian Safety Month

October is a time for Halloween, but it’s also notably National Pedestrian Safety Month. Therefore, it’s a good time for anyone trick-or-treating and others to review and observe the rules of traveling by foot. If you are in a pedestrian accident, always speak with an Austin pedestrian accident lawyer who can help.

Current Fatality Updates for 2022

The National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) released some revealing facts for 2022. Below are some of the pedestrian statistics featured in a recent NTSA report.

  1. The highest percentage of pedestrian fatalities fell under the age group of 55 to 59 years of age (about 23%), with people 65 years or older numbering 21% of the recorded deaths. People 60 to 64 years old numbered 550 fatalities, while the next highest number of fatalities numbered 555, recorded for people 50 to 54 years old.
  2. Younger people, 10 to 14 years old, had lower fatality rates (78), or 46 pedestrian fatalities for children, 5 to 9 years of age.
  3. The average age of people walking, who was killed in a traffic mishap, was 48 years of age. Over the past decade, the average age has edged up slightly – from 45 to 48 years old.
  4. About 3 percent of people hurt in traffic accidents are pedestrians, with children from 10 to 14 years old injured more frequently.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or CDC, most pedestrian accidents occur in urban areas, away from intersections, where traffic goes at a higher rate of speed. A large number of the fatalities involve drugs and alcohol.

How the Law Defines a Pedestrian

A pedestrian is anyone who travels by foot or uses a wheelchair. While you might think of people who ride bicycles as pedestrians, they still must obey many of the rules of travel that motorists follow. Therefore, you need to stay well-versed in keeping safe if you walk a good deal.

This means you need to know the rules as they pertain to you.

Learn the Rules for Pedestrians

Needless to say, you need to practice safety when walking. Even though the activity is good for your health, you still have to be aware of your surroundings and yield the right-of-way. This means:

  • Looking both ways, including behind you at crosswalks and side streets;
  • Walking, facing traffic;
  • Wearing reflective clothing or carrying a flashlight at night; and
  • Staying on the sidewalk when possible.

You should always take care when crossing at crosswalks, as motorists may turn right or left or go straight without seeing you until it’s too late. Therefore, always follow the signals at the intersection and look around you before you cross.

This means you need to yield to traffic. Don’t play chicken or jaywalk. Again, follow the rules.

For example, at crosswalk signals, you can walk when seeing the walking symbol. However, if a signal is flashing “Don’ Walk,” stop and don’t go further. If you’re already in the crosswalk, quickly complete the crossing.

Crossing at Crosswalks

Should you see a solid “Don’t Walk” or a red hand, you cannot enter the crosswalk. If there is no light, drivers should stop for you, but you should still use caution.

Yield to Emergency Vehicles – Just Like Motorists Do

Also, yield to emergency vehicles that are sounding a siren or flashing lights. At railroad crossings, never go around lowered gates.

Stay on the Sidewalk – If You Can

Again, always use the sidewalk if one is available. If there is no sidewalk, walk on the shoulder as far as you can from the road. Walk facing traffic if you cannot walk on the shoulder. No one should walk along a highway unless they are experiencing an emergency.

The main things to remember are to watch for traffic, yield to traffic and don’t take any chances. Always look behind you when you cross at crosswalks and side streets.

Call TK Injury Lawyers About Your Pedestrian Accident Claim Today

If you’ve been injured as a pedestrian in a vehicle, speak to a lawyer about your claim if the other party was at fault. Consulting with an attorney is always a good idea, as you may be entitled to compensation to pay for your injury and suffering. In Austin, Texas, contact TK Injury Lawyers at 512-910-2000 about your claim no.

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