According to data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Association, about 5,000 pedestrians around the country lose their lives each year after being struck by a motor vehicle. While some of these fatalities may be unavoidable, many others involve some sort of negligence on the part of the pedestrian, the motorist or both. Establishing liability is a crucial step in a Michigan pedestrian accident lawsuit, and this is generally done by determining whether or not the parties involved met their duty of care obligation.
Michigan residents know walking is good for their health. Walking safely, however, is a must because accident injuries can quickly undo any health benefits. By taking precautions, pedestrians can help ensure their safety and avoid being hit by cars. It may also help them to know if they or any family members are more vulnerable to accidents because of their age or gender.
Michigan pedestrians may be much safer at places on the road where there are pedestrian crossing islands and medians. According to a report from the Federal Highway Administration, motor vehicle crashes may be reduced by almost 40 percent and pedestrian knockdowns by more than 45 percent in these areas. The two are not quite the same thing. A median is simply an area between two opposing lanes, and while it might be a raised area, it may also simply be designated by lines painted on the road. A pedestrian crossing island is a raised area designed for pedestrians.
Michigan pedestrians have a much higher risk of dying or suffering serious injuries when they are involved in traffic accidents than do people in vehicles. There are several things they should do to reduce their risk of being hit.
According to a report issued by the Governors Highway Safety Association, pedestrian deaths were estimated to have jumped by about 10 percent between 2014 and 2015. There were several factors cited including more drivers on the road logging more miles thanks to a reduction in gas prices. Increased cellphone use was also cited as a reason for the jump in pedestrian deaths as many may have been distracted at the time of a crash. Pedestrians in Michigan and around the country are also at risk of being hit by city buses that have blind spots that may make them harder to see.
A disturbing trend has appeared in recent years. After decades of declining, in 2010, pedestrian deaths began to rise. A report this year from the Governors Highway Safety Association, (GHSA) notes the trend, and reminds everyone, that no matter how you get from point A to point B, you probably walk at some point.