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Although many of us are drivers, we are also all pedestrians. We are therefore at some risk of injury from a car whenever we are walking in close proximity to a moving vehicle, and that probably includes all of us at some point every day.

This blog will provide a brief introduction to pedestrian accidents, how it can be prevented, and who is most at risk.

The dangers

Pedestrians are at a surprisingly high risk of being in an accident involving a car. In 2015, for example, 5,376 pedestrians were killed due to traffic crashes. This is a worrying number and justifies the need to take every precaution possible to prevent pedestrian accidents. What’s more, during each trip, pedestrians are 1.5 times more likely than a passenger sitting in a moving vehicle to be killed by a car.

Who is at risk?

Those who are often involved in an accident are those who are visually impaired or have reduced mobility. Therefore, most at risk are older people, namely those who are over the age of 65. In fact, 19 percent of all pedestrian deaths in 2015 were people over the age of 65. Pedestrians who are impaired by alcohol or other drugs are also more at risk.

How can pedestrian accidents be prevented?

The good news is that pedestrian accidents and injuries can be prevented. Visibility can be increased at night by carrying a flashlight or wearing reflective clothing. Make sure that you are always walking on the sidewalk, and if a sidewalk is not available, always face oncoming traffic and walk on the shoulder of the road.

Source: CDC, “Pedestrian safety,” accessed Aug. 10, 2017

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