According to transportation officials, pedestrian safety has become a major concern in large, walkable cities around the country. According to the CDC, the pedestrian population increased by 24 million people between 2005 and 2010. As a result, walkable cities, like Las Vegas, are taking a closer look at pedestrian safety and ways to reduce accidents and injury claims filed with a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer.
According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, there were approximately 4,800 pedestrian deaths in the United States in 2013. Las Vegas, New York, Chicago, Boston, and Washington DC are all ranked among the most “walkable cities” in the country, but each shows high numbers of pedestrian accidents and injuries. These cities, and others, are discussing pedestrian safety options that include:
- Shortening crosswalks
- Adding crosswalk reflectors
- Building pedestrian safety islands
- Lowering speed limits
- Installing security cameras
- Increasing police presence in high traffic areas.
Distracted and drunk driving is shown to be one of the top causes of auto and pedestrian accidents in walkable cities. In Las Vegas, thousands of distracted pedestrians also contribute to pedestrian-related accidents and personal injuries each year. Pedestrians use cell phones and other electronic devices every day while walking down busy sidewalks and streets. In busy tourist cities, like Las Vegas, it’s common to have to navigate around pedestrians talking or texting on their cell phones while walking.
Studies show that four out of ten pedestrians have personally witnessed a distracted driving or walking accident, and over 25 percent of pedestrians have been victims of accidents that resulted in personal injuries. In Las Vegas, one of the country’s most popular tourist destinations, a Las Vegas personal injury lawyer sees many pedestrian-related accidents with injuries that range from minor scrapes and bruises to severe back and head trauma.
Although most people realize the dangers of texting or talking on a phone while driving or walking, many people still do it. Changes are being made across the country to increase awareness of pedestrian safety and reduce pedestrian accidents in cities with heavy pedestrian traffic. In early 2016, the safety effort got a big boost when the U.S. Department of Transportation announced over $1.6 million in grants for walkable cities to promote pedestrian safety.