Pedestrian Deaths Reach 28-Year High in 2018: What’s Causing It?

Every time we leave the safety of our homes, there are risks that we encounter. Whether we’re on foot or in a vehicle, we put our lives into the hands of others. We have to trust that the people zipping by us on the roads are paying attention and are in complete control of their vehicles. It’s a cost of living in our modern world.

Unfortunately, accidents happen. Vehicles malfunction. Road conditions present potential hazards. Drivers allow distractions to take their mind off of the road ahead. As a pedestrian, you are even more at the mercy of others. In 2018, the potential danger to pedestrians became even more apparent.

Pedestrian Fatalities Hit 28-Year High

The Governor’s Highway Safety Association is a nonprofit that implements federal grants in order to better address highway safety issues in our country. According to a preliminary report by the GHSA, 2018 had the most pedestrian deaths in our country since 1990.

The preliminary report found:

  • There was a 4% increase in pedestrian deaths from the 2017 figures
  • There were 6,227 projected pedestrian fatalities last year

The numbers presented by the GHSA are not yet final. They are based on a statistical analysis which pulls the total count from the first six months of 2018 and applies it to the remaining six months. The 6,227 deaths are based on this analysis.

2018 had the most pedestrian deaths in our country since 1990

This is an incredibly alarming statistic. Since 1990, there have been countless safety features added to our cars. Our new technology should be driving these numbers down, and yet we are only seeing them increase.

What’s Causing This Increase in Deaths?

In 2008, gas prices across the country soared in the wake of the financial recession. Over the past 10 years, we’ve watched as the price has steadily decreased to where it is today. As gas has gone down in price, there has been a rise in large, gas guzzling SUVs in our country.

According to the GHSA, the increasing amount of SUVs on our roads is a factor in the rise of pedestrian deaths. The larger and heavier the vehicle, the less likely a person is to survive after being struck.

From 2013 to 2017:

  • Pedestrian deaths caused by SUVs rose by 50%

In comparison, the number of pedestrian deaths caused by cars rose by 30%. More SUVs on the road seem to be leading to more pedestrian accidents and that is causing more fatalities.

Even taking SUVs out of the equation, we have a serious issue in our country. As our cars and SUVs get safer, we should be seeing less injuries and deaths, and yet we are seeing a consistent increase across the board.

In my opinion, distracted driving is most likely a factor as well. It seems like no coincidence that the pedestrian death count is increasing at the same time that smartphone ownership and usage is doing the same. We have more reasons than ever to take our eyes off the road, and we can see where that leads us.

Contact Brooks Law Group

You can’t always count on others to keep your safety in mind. In the event of an accident, however, you can trust that the Brooks Law Group will fight for you and always put you first. Our attorneys and staff are dedicated to helping you get back on your feet with the compensation you deserve. If we don’t win your case, you don’t owe us anything.

We’re a personal injury law firm with a personal approach to each and every case. Call our offices at 1-800-LAW-3030 or fill out our online case evaluation form to receive your free case evaluation. Don’t wait; connect with a law firm that cares about you today.

Steve was born in New Orleans, Louisiana. As was the practice for new doctors his father worked day and night during his medical residency at Charity Hospital there. Steve comes from a long line of doctors. His father, his grandfather, his great grandfather, even two uncles were all specialists and/or surgeons in their chosen medical specialties, including internal medicine specialist, obstetrics / gynecology, neurosurgery and general practice / surgery. His great-great grandfather was the Surgeon General of Ohio during the Civil War.