It would be hard for most Minnesota drivers to imagine hitting a pedestrian. Unfortunately, it’s an all-too-common occurrence – especially when the weather starts to change.
As daylight grows shorter in the fall and winter months, pedestrian accidents become more likely. This is because the reduced visibility makes it hard for drivers to see pedestrians, especially in harsh weather conditions.
Statistics on pedestrian accidents
The National Safety Council (NSC) reported that around 7,330 pedestrians died in traffic accidents or non-traffic situations in 2016. In this case, non-traffic situations refer to pedestrian accidents that occurred in:
• Parking lots
• Private property
This number has changed in the years since NSC released those numbers. It’s important to know that while traffic deaths have declined overall, pedestrian fatalities also rose during that time period.
What’s causing the increase in pedestrian accidents?
Both drivers and pedestrians are to blame for these accidents. Pedestrians distracted by their phones have walked into traffic, and have fallen into holes, causing injury.
Headphones can also be partially to blame for this increase, as it makes it harder for pedestrians to hear cars coming. Children are more likely to be the victim of pedestrian accidents, while bus drivers are more likely to cause a pedestrian accident due to their blind spots.
Financial cost of pedestrian accidents
The NSC calculated the cost of pedestrian injuries in 2012 to be around $58,700 per event. A pedestrian fatality in that same year was estimated to cost around $4,538,000.
These numbers were calculated by including things like wage loss, medical expenses, car damage, and insurance costs to employers. This also accounts for productivity loss and administrative expenses.
While it’s easy to calculate the financial cost of pedestrian accidents, they have a much more devastating impact on the victims and families. Pedestrian accidents are almost completely avoidable.