A newly-released report offers some chilling findings for all pedestrians in Arizona. The state ranks fifth in the U.S. for pedestrian deaths, so if you are used to commuting on foot, you may want to think twice before leaving your home.
No, we are not saying that you should cover yourself with a blanket and stay home forever. All we want you to do is take extra precautions when crossing roads and intersections in Phoenix or elsewhere in Arizona and get familiar with pedestrian traffic laws in the state.
Arizona ranks 5th state for pedestrian deaths
A new report by the National Transportation Safety Board, titled “Pedestrian Safety Special Investigation Report,” has studied pedestrian accident and fatality data in all 50 states across the U.S. from 2007 to 2016.
Our Phoenix pedestrian accident attorney at Lorona Mead has looked at the freshest data available, the pedestrian fatality rates in 2016, and, to tell you the truth, was taken aback. Turns out, Arizona ranked 5th in the U.S. for pedestrian deaths per 100,000 residents.
At a rate of 2.75, Arizona was surpassed by only four states: Delaware (2.83), South Carolina (2.90), Florida (3.16), and New Mexico (3.50) with its highest pedestrian fatality rate in the country.
What makes Arizona so dangerous for pedestrians?
The report makes quite a few recommendations to authorities to strengthen the safety of pedestrians in these most dangerous states for pedestrians. These safety measures include but are not limited to:
- Adopting new standards for car headlight systems;
- Improving vehicle testing measures; and
- Investigating the causes of pedestrian crashes and fatalities in certain areas, and implementing changes to reduce similar crashes in these areas in the future.
Our experienced pedestrian accident lawyer in Phoenix says that many motor vehicle crashes involving pedestrians in Phoenix and all across Arizona occur because car drivers and pedestrians are not aware of all traffic laws in the state.
This is not the first time Arizona has been warned of its disturbing problem with pedestrian deaths. A June report by the Governors Highway Safety Association named Arizona the worst state for pedestrians with the highest pedestrian fatality rate per 100,000 residents. In 2016, there were nearly 200 pedestrian deaths reported to authorities in Arizona.
Little-known traffic laws for pedestrians in Arizona
Even though the term “jaywalking” is nowhere to be found in Arizona traffic law, the state’s law is unambiguous when it comes to regulating how pedestrians are legally allowed and not allowed to cross the road. In Phoenix and elsewhere in Arizona, a pedestrian has a legal right to cross at intersections and crosswalks with clear traffic signals and clearly outlined crosswalks.
In no way does it mean that a pedestrian has a right to jump out in front of traffic or step out in front of a vehicle so quickly that the car driver does not have a reasonable amount of time to come to a full stop. A pedestrian in Arizona must cross the road at designated crossings. Do keep in mind that runners and joggers are considered pedestrians, too, which is why they must follow the same traffic laws.
Have you been injured in a pedestrian accident? Let our Phoenix pedestrian accident attorney at Lorona Mead investigate your case and help you recover damages. Call our offices at 602-385-6825 for a free case evaluation.