While walking is good for your health and beneficial for the environment, it does present inherent dangers. In Florida, pedestrian accidents are unfortunately common and injuries caused by these accidents can be severe and life-threatening. News reports indicate that Orlando in particular is one of the most dangerous places for pedestrians, and while our temperate climate may be conducive to walking, increases in motorists have contributed to increases in pedestrian injuries and fatalities. Local police hope that a new grant to increase patrolling by law enforcement combined with increased safety awareness on the part of motorists and pedestrians will help to reduce these accident rates and in the process save lives.
Orlando Receives Grant to Prevent Pedestrian Accidents
According to a January 2016 news report on pedestrian accidents from Central Florida Future, part of the USA Today news network, the city of Orlando is due to receive a $40,000 grant from the Florida Department of Transportation. The money is given specifically with the goal of reducing pedestrian accidents in the area, and will be used to beef up patrols of dangerous intersections as well as to conduct ‘stings’ at crosswalks in order to catch drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians. According to the news report, Orlando leads the United States in terms of pedestrian accidents and fatalities, and law enforcement hopes this new grant will help to increase overall public safety while alerting both drivers and pedestrians to potential dangers.
Factors Contributing to Pedestrian Accidents
The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) reports that Florida had over 290 pedestrian fatalities in 2014, which is an increase of over 50 from the previous year. That number puts us as the highest in the nation, followed only by California and Texas. In terms of nationwide pedestrian fatality rates, the majority of other states averaged 50 or less. According to both the Central Florida Future reports and the GHSA, the following factors contribute to the incidence of pedestrian accidents:
- Increases in the number of motorists and traffic;
- Dangerous behaviors on the part of motorists, such as speeding, distracted driving, and driving under the influence;
- Motorists failure to follow traffic rules, such as obeying traffic signals and yielding at crosswalks; and
- Poor visibility at night.
Dangerous behaviors on the part of pedestrians also lead to an increased frequency of pedestrian accidents and fatalities. If you are out walking, take care to avoid being distracted by your cell phone or texting, don’t wear ear buds that could potentially block noises that could alert you to danger, and avoid walking on the road or failing to use crosswalks when crossing streets.
Contact Us for Assistance
If you or someone you love is injured in a pedestrian accident, contact our experienced Florida car accident attorneys right away. At Hogan Frick, we understand the serious and potentially life threatening injuries these accidents cause. We can advise you on how to hold responsible parties accountable for the damage they have caused, and assist you in getting the compensation you deserve. With offices in Orlando, Gainesville, Ocala, Kissimmee, and Lakeland, Hogan Frick can help you today.