Pedestrian Safety in Virginia a Concern
We like to think of walking as a stress-free way to get our steps in and reduce our reliance on cars. While these things can be true, they don’t tell the whole story. Pedestrian safety is a critical issue in Virginia. Every year, hundreds of pedestrians are involved in accidents on Virginia’s roads, resulting in both injuries and fatalities.
The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles and Virginia Highway Safety Office reported the following concerning statistics for 2021:
- 1,399 Pedestrian Crashes
- 413 Pedestrians Seriously Injured
- 125 Pedestrians Killed (9.7% Increase Over 2020)
These statistics highlight the urgent need to understand the causes of pedestrian accidents and develop effective solutions to prevent them.
Reasons for Concern
Distracted driving is a major contributor to pedestrian accidents. Drivers who are texting, using their phones, or engaging in other distracting behaviors are less likely to notice pedestrians crossing the road. Poor visibility is another factor that contributes to pedestrian accidents. Pedestrians who are not visible to drivers, especially in low-light conditions, are at a higher risk of being involved in an accident.
Speeding is a major cause of accidents, and it is particularly dangerous for pedestrians. Drivers who are traveling at high speeds are less likely to see pedestrians crossing the road and are less able to stop in time to avoid a collision. The risks only increase when drivers opt to drink and drive. They’re often slower to react to pedestrians and more likely to cause accidents.
Our local roads and highways are designed with cars – not walkers – in mind. In some areas of Virginia, there is a lack of pedestrian infrastructure, such as sidewalks, crosswalks, and pedestrian signals. This can make it difficult for pedestrians to navigate safely across busy roads.
Prevent Pedestrian Accidents
Motorists and pedestrians alike owe it to one another to be proactive in preventing accidents. Education is a great place to start. Drivers should be reminded to avoid distracted driving, watch for pedestrians, and yield to them when crossing. Pedestrians should be reminded to cross at designated crosswalks, look both ways before crossing, and avoid distractions while walking.
These strategies can improve pedestrian safety on Virginia’s roads and reduce the number of pedestrian accidents. By working together, Virginia can create a safer and more pedestrian-friendly transportation system.
Virginia Personal Injury Lawyers
If you or your loved one has been injured in a Virginia pedestrian accident, contact the Law Offices of Richard J. Serpe, PC for a free consultation to discuss your legal rights. You can call or text us anytime at 757-233-0009.