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Pedestrian Deaths Remain High in the State of Indiana

Steve Wagner

Pedestrian Accidents Sustain on Deadly Trend Across Indiana

It remains striking that more and more pedestrians are killed in traffic-related crashes in the U.S. each year, making this group one of the few to experience an increase in annual fatalities. For example, Metro police recently reported a pedestrian death at the 2600 block of Westlane, east of 71st Street and Michigan Road. Investigators told local news, “a male in his 30’s emerged from a vehicle at the entrance to a residential addition and was struck by a vehicle.” The victim was taken to St. Vincent where he was pronounced dead. Luckily the drivers of both vehicles remained at the scene and are cooperating with police to identify the issues related to the accident but it’s likely the event could have been prevented.

The Governors Highway Safety Association data report “Spotlight on Highway Safety” estimated that nearly 6,000 pedestrians were killed by automobiles for the second straight year in 2017 while all other traffic deaths decreased by 14 percent. Indiana has a poor rate of 0.94 pedestrian deaths per 100,000 people with the 12th highest pedestrian fatality rate in the country.

Pedestrians Account For 16% of All Motor Vehicle Deaths

The reality is that many pedestrian accidents are caused by the driver of the vehicle, leaving little room for the pedestrian to avoid the incident. Most pedestrian fatalities occur in urban areas where there can be more than one factor at play but some of the more common driver errors causing pedestrian injury or fatality can happen anywhere and include:

  • Inexperienced or New Drivers
  • Illegal U-Turns
  • Failure to Follow School Zone Driving Practices
  • Failure to Make A Full Stop at Intersections
  • Speeding, Impaired Driving, and Distracted Drivers

Along with communities creating comprehensive safety programs to promote safe pedestrian practices, increased public service campaigns focused on safe driving, and advancements in in-car technology, there remains a strong need to send reduction rates of pedestrian crashes, fatalities and injuries, down across Indiana. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration recommends the following safety steps and precautions for any person on foot, walking, running, jogging, or hiking near a roadway.

  • Avoid using alcohol and drugs.
  • Bright or reflective clothing will ensure you visibility any time of the day.
  • Avoid using distractors like phones or headphones.
  • Never assume a driver sees you.
  • Cross at crosswalks or other places on the road where drivers expect to see pedestrians.
  • Stay off of freeways, restricted-access highways and other pedestrian-prohibited roadways.
  • Walk on a sidewalk if available, and if not, walk on the shoulder, facing traffic.

The pedestrian accident injury attorneys at Wagner Reese can provide these additional, very basic ways to become a more mindful pedestrian and travel safely while walking, whether the area is a quiet parking lot or congested intersection.

  1. It is critical to look in all directions when crossing, even if you are at a crosswalk with a walk signal or a driveway.
  2. It is a terrible and potentially disastrous idea to dart across a road quickly because you cannot see in both directions.
  3. For children and adults alike, keep your head up and stay alert to changes in your environment.
  4. While we certainly wish otherwise, it is not safe to assume a driver will yield the right of way to a pedestrian. Take a moment to notice traffic patterns and always watch for vehicles and motorcycles.

As noted above, in most cases the driver is liable in a pedestrian-car accident because of an error or illegal driving choice they made. In fact, even when the pedestrian has been negligent and carries some of the blame for an accident, the driver is often also partially at fault.

Seek Financial Recovery for Your Injury

If you or a loved one has been injured or tragically taken in a pedestrian accident, the personal injury attorneys at Wagner Reese are here to assist you with a recovery plan. We can help determine fault in the accident, as well as work to help secure the compensation you and your family deserve. Connect with us by submitting our online form and our attorneys will review your information and respond promptly. If you wish to speak directly with us, please call 1-888-710-9377.

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