Pennsylvania sees its fair share of traffic deaths every year, but the number of pedestrian fatalities has actually increased in recent years in the United States. The Governors Highway Safety Association reports that approximately 6,000 pedestrians died in 2017 from car accidents. The total number of fatalities has risen in the last few years, but it recently hit a 25-year high, and it is cause for concern, especially since the number of fatalities when an accident involves two vehicles has decreased within the same time frame.
Although Pennsylvania does not end up in the top five states for pedestrian fatalities, far too many people lose their lives due to a litany of factors contributing to these types of collisions in the state. Both pedestrians and drivers behind the wheel need to be cautious to limit the number of deaths that take place on roadways.
Distracted driving is a significant factor
Many drivers know to never get behind the wheel if they had any amount of alcohol that evening. However, plenty of people still look at their phones when they drive. This can lead to pedestrian accidents because taking your eyes off the road for even a couple seconds can lead to a collision. The situation becomes even more dangerous when pedestrians look at their phone. Neither person is aware of the risk, and an accident is virtually a certainty.
Additional factors can lead to an accident
The report from the GHSA discovered that in 33 percent of pedestrian accidents, the pedestrian was under the influence of alcohol. People tend to think that walking home after a night of drinking is safer, and while it is preferable over driving, it can still be dangerous. In 72 percent of pedestrian accidents, the person walking was not in a designated crosswalk, and driving can make a person more likely to jaywalk. It is the responsibility of drivers and pedestrians to limit the number of accidents that occur on Pennsylvania roadways.