• Tom Girardi

Do you live in the deadliest city for pedestrians?

When you are on foot among traffic, your life is at risk. You may walk to do errands or get exercise. On the other hand, you may simply step out of your vehicle because you have a flat tire, a break down or a fender bender. Any of these moments can be the start of a devastating accident.

Accidents involving pedestrians are among the most tragic and dangerous incidents on roadways. California has one of the highest rates of fatal pedestrian accidents in the country. Los Angeles pedestrians have an even greater risk of sustaining catastrophic or fatal injuries from a collision with a motor vehicle.

The danger is real

The most recent report from the U.S. Department of Transportation shows that Los Angeles loses five pedestrians a week to fatal accidents. That's twice as many pedestrian deaths than in other major cities like New York, Chicago and San Francisco. Many cities are striving to reduce pedestrian fatalities by making roads more pedestrian friendly. This includes reducing speed limits, building crosswalks and changing road designs. Cities that have not started these programs continue to see increases in pedestrian deaths.

While you may think these changes could bring an end to the deaths of those on foot, it is not always the design of the city that results in pedestrian deaths. The following are some common factors in many fatal pedestrian accidents:

  • Drivers operating SUVs, pickup trucks and other large vehicles

  • Impaired drivers

  • Distracted drivers

  • Drivers exceeding the posted speed limits, which are often too high for safety to begin with

The difference in injuries you may suffer if a car hits you going 30 mph and a car going 40 mph can be significant. About 50% of pedestrians die when a car traveling 40 mph strikes them. A vehicle going 50 mph or faster is almost certain to cause fatal injuries.

The aftermath of a pedestrian accident

You may find it hard to imagine the personal and financial cost of losing a loved one in a pedestrian accident. If your loved one dies or you suffer catastrophic injuries after a motor vehicle accident, you may face thousands of dollars in medical and funeral costs, lost wages, and other expenses. Learn about your legal options for compensation, so that you can make your way forward with your life.