Walking near urban American streets might be one of the most dangerous things that many of us do regularly. In the past, we’ve covered how national pedestrian traffic fatalities had reached a 30-year high. Now, a new report has found that Texas pedestrians face some of the most dangerous roads in America. The Pedestrian Danger Index is compiled by Smart Growth America and the National Complete Streets Coalition, two nonpartisan safety advocacy groups. In it’s most recent 2019 edition, the index labeled Texas as the eighth most dangerous state for pedestrians in the nation.
Pedestrian Fatalities in Texas
Nationally, the Pedestrian Danger Index found that fatal pedestrian accidents have increased by 35 percent in the last decade. The last two years on record—2016 and 2017—were the most deadly years for pedestrians since 1990.
In 2013, the state of Texas had 485 pedestrian fatalities. In recent years, deadly accidents have steadily increased in Texas to secure its spot as one of the top ten most dangerous states for pedestrians. In 2017, 616 pedestrians were killed and 2018 had 619 fatalities. According to projections, the state is set to have about 635 fatalities next year. By 2022, officials fear that pedestrian deaths will soar to 680. In short, Texas has a pedestrian safety problem, and safety advocates think that thousands of lives can be saved with the right efforts.
Why Does Texas Have So Many Pedestrian Deaths?
No single cause can receive all the blame for pedestrian traffic fatalities in Texas. However, safety advocates and experts frequently cite distracted driving, inadequate street design, and large vehicles as a reason for deadly accidents.
According to the Texas Department of Transportation, reasons for the increase in accidents include “the state’s improved economic conditions, oil and gas industry-related traffic volume, population growth in the entire state, lower gas prices, increases in non-motorized modes of transportation, and expected increases in miles driven and speed.”
To address these problems, the state transportation department plans to allocate $600 million of state funds for improving roadway pedestrian safety. These improvements include widening roads, adding rumble strips to roads, improved turned lanes, increased reinforced shoulders, and investing in new safety technology.
If you’ve suffered because of a serious pedestrian accident, Arnold & Itkin is ready to help. Our Texas pedestrian accident lawyers are ready to take your call at (888) 493-1629 to provide a free consultation.