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5 Ways to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents

While any type of motor vehicle crash is dangerous, those involving pedestrians are especially hazardous. Without any type of protection, pedestrians involved in accidents are at risk of experiencing much more serious injuries or even fatalities. If you’re ever involved in a pedestrian accident in Colorado, it’s critical to call on an experienced personal injury attorney in Denver. These professionals can help you understand your cases, and if warranted, seek financial compensation for your injuries. 

Here, we’re taking a closer look at pedestrian accidents, the common causes of these types of accidents, and offering tips to help you avoid these accidents in the first place. If both drivers and pedestrians focus more on safety and awareness, our roads can be safer for everyone.

What are the Most Common Causes of Pedestrian Accidents?

It’s true, of course, that every accident involving a motor vehicle and pedestrian is unique to a degree. However, studies show that a large percentage of pedestrian accidents occur from just a handful of identifiable causes. By understanding what causes the highest majority of these accidents, we can work to improve highway safety and keep our roads safer.

The most common causes of pedestrian accidents include:

    Distracted driving.
    Driving under the influence.
    Road construction.
    Bad weather conditions (rain, snow, ice, etc.).
    Impatient drivers and speeding.
    Poor visibility (due to night driving or weather).
    Vehicles making left turns.

5 Ways to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents

There are many ways that both pedestrians and drivers can work to make our roads safer and prevent pedestrian accidents from occurring. At the core of the issue, many studies suggest that awareness is the key—on behalf of both pedestrians and motor vehicle drivers. Many pedestrian accidents are caused by distracted driving, illegal walking by pedestrians, or poor driving habits. By being aware of these practices and keeping your full and complete attention on the road, many accidents could be avoided.

In addition to maintaining your full awareness on the road, here are 5 additional way to avoid pedestrian accidents:

1. Slow down in pedestrian areas: when driving in spots that you know tend to be busy, such as downtown city centers or neighborhoods, always slow down and keep your full attention on the road. As a driver, you never know when a pedestrian might suddenly cross a road (even when there is no crosswalk) or veer into traffic. Obey the slower posted speed limits in busy, urban areas and always be prepared to respond to changing road conditions. For pedestrians, the advice is similar: if you’re in an area with lots of motor vehicle traffic, be extra cautious.

2. Look for eye contact: even if you think someone can see you, whether driving or walking along a roadway, this doesn’t mean that they can. Whenever crossing a road or driving through an intersection where there’s a pedestrian, look for eye contact. Simply making quick eye contact can ensure that the other person sees you, and thus, is aware of your presence. Of course, this practice becomes much easier when you’re driving at an appropriate speed and you’re not distracted.

3. Avoid distracted driving: speaking of being distracted, did you know that distracted driving is one of the leading causes of auto accidents? Distracted driving can take many different forms. Whether you’re texting on your phone, playing with the radio, talking with a passenger, or gazing off for just a moment, this can all significantly increase your risk of being involved in an accident. Even just taking your eyes from the road for a second or two makes it that much harder to stop or slow down if there’s a pedestrian nearby.

4. Never drive (or walk near roads) under the influence: even one alcoholic drink can significantly impair your ability to safely operate a motor vehicle. Most of us are well-versed to the dangers of drunk driving, but many may not be aware that a pedestrian under the influence can also be hazardous. If a pedestrian has been drinking, they may be less aware about nearby cars or unable to obey traffic signals.

5. Avoid driving in poor weather: poor weather conditions, such as rain, snow, or sleet can make driving that much more difficult. As a result, it’s more challenging for drivers to adjust, stop, and respond to changing road conditions. This makes it much more dangerous for both pedestrians and drivers alike.

Conclusion – 5 Ways to Avoid Pedestrian Accidents

Compared to other types of collisions, an accident between a motor vehicle and a pedestrian can lead to serious injuries or even prove fatal. There are thousands of pedestrian accidents every year in the United States; however, with more education and awareness and safer driving habits, we can work to reduce these numbers and keep our roads and sidewalks safer.

There are surprisingly simple strategies for avoiding pedestrian accidents. If you’re a driver, always maintain complete focus on the road. Distracted driving, whether this is playing with the radio, texting or talking on your phone, looking at a map, or even simply zoning out can all quickly lead to a collision between a vehicle and a pedestrian. Additionally, never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol (even just one drink) and avoid, if possible, driving in poor weather conditions or at night. Going slower in adverse conditions can make all the difference and keep you safer behind the wheel.

As a pedestrian, always obey traffic signals and stay in posted crosswalks when cutting across a road of any type. Always wear bright colors or reflectors if you plan on walking near a road or busy intersections—and this rule is especially true for walking at night. In many ways, awareness and caution are the two keys to avoiding pedestrian accidents. By maintaining these two qualities whenever you’re near a road, you can help prevent these accidents.