Florida Ranks as Second-Worst State for Pedestrian Deaths
Florida is a perilous place for pedestrians. There is a severe lack of crosswalks, sidewalks, and bike lanes, which makes for a dangerous situation for anyone trying to go somewhere without a car. According to a report by the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), Florida is the second-worst state for pedestrians regarding fatalities. During the first half of 2017, there were 303 pedestrian deaths, ranking just under California which had 352 during that same period.
The report also stated that Arizona, California, Florida, New York, and Texas combined saw 43 percent of all pedestrian deaths in the United States.
Sadly, in the state of Florida, things haven’t changed regarding pedestrian safety. Miami-Dade County, in particular, had a large number of fatalities in 2016. That year, 83 people were fatally struck by cars in Miami-Dade County alone while Broward County saw 67 pedestrian deaths that same year. The study also finds that the pedestrians most likely to be struck by a car are senior citizens and those who are non-white.
Street Conditions in Florida
Unfortunately, none of this information comes as a surprise for residents of Florida. Poorly lit walking and biking areas mean it may be difficult for drivers even to see some of the pedestrians who might be walking along them. Certain areas, like the Miami-Dade County area, are optimized only for car traffic. In many residential areas, there aren’t even any sidewalks within the county.
Things are sadly not much different for bicyclists in Florida as the state ranks number in the nation for bicycling fatalities. Although certain like Miami and Miami Beach have included more designated bike lanes in the past few years, cyclists still have to be wary of some of the worst drivers in the area.
The GHSA suggests that there may be a few reasons for the poor driving, including the legalized use of medical marijuana. They believe that this has increased the number of people getting behind the wheel while impaired. Additionally, there are still many cases of distracted driving due to people using their cell phones while operating their vehicles.
According to a list compiled by We Love Cycling, Orlando was the only city in the country that made it to the top 10 list of worst cities worldwide for bicyclists. The city has small bike lanes, poor lighting, few crosswalks, and an insufficient number of sidewalks which also contributes to the high number of bicycle accidents in Orlando.
Putting an End to Pedestrian Accidents
Recently, the Orlando Police Department got a $43,000 grant to assist in reducing the number of accidents. In 2015, Orange County put $15 million toward pedestrian safety with the INVEST in Our Home for Life program. The funds will go toward pedestrian safety, improving intersections and creating sidewalks, crosswalks, turn lanes and other essential safety features for pedestrians.
As it stands today, pedestrians and cyclists are at a great risk of being struck by a motor vehicle, resulting in severe and often life-threatening injuries. If injured in a pedestrian accident, be sure to explore your legal options for financial compensation.
Orlando Pedestrian Accident Lawyers
The Orlando pedestrian accident lawyers at The Umansky Law Firm have over 100 years of combined experience and can help you recover the funds you’re entitled to by law. As a testament to the longstanding quality of The Umansky Law Firm, firm partners William and Zahra Umansky have been on the Super Lawyers collaboratively for the last three years. Today they continue to provide unmatched services for clients in need of passionate legal representation. Contact us today for a free case evaluation.