Research Explores Pedestrian Fatalities

University of South Florida research targets pedestrian fatalities due to the rising number of accidents affecting people on foot. The University of South Florida Center for Urban Transportation Research recently looked at the factors that caused pedestrians to be more likely to suffer fatal injuries in an accident.

They identified that socioeconomic status was not a statistically relevant demographic when thinking about the likelihood of a pedestrian suffering fatal injuries after being hit by a car. The recent findings contradicted what was previously a hypothesis about pedestrian accidents disproportionately impacting those lower-income residents in Tampa. Unfortunately, Tampa has been rated as one of the most unsafe places for biking and walking around the country.

Being involved in an accident anywhere is possible, and pedestrians suffer some of the most disabling and life threatening injuries out there. Transportation planners often use the results of studies like this to design safer roadways throughout thoroughfares. Those findings indicate that pedestrian crossings located near curbed areas of the roadway are much more likely to result in a pedestrian fatality than those in straight roads. These numbers were more than 2.5 times a straight road.

The numbers of accidents on a curved road were 2.5 times those on a straight road. Keeping pedestrian crossings away from curves could dramatically increase survival rates for car crashes involving pedestrians. The study also found that pedestrians hit at night are two times as likely to die in an accident than those struck during the daytime, which shows that lighting at pedestrian crossing points could have a significant impact on decreasing the chances of severe injuries.