More SUVs Mean More Pedestrian Deaths
Mt. PLEASANT, Texas. According to QZ, a new study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety found that SUV accidents rose by 81% starting in 2009. In 2016, the number of pedestrians struck by cars rose to 5,987, which is the highest level we’ve seen in 28 years. SUV pedestrian crashes were also more likely to result in deaths. Why could this be the case?
Speeding was identified as a factor, but lack of proper road design for pedestrians was another concern. As urban areas become denser, more people may choose to walk rather than drive. However, city design may not have caught up to a world in which pedestrians and cars share the road. SUVs may be more likely to result in deadly accidents because of the wider front end that these cars have and the higher profile of these vehicles that situate them higher on the road. SUVs could strike a pedestrian in the head or chest, resulting in more serious injuries.
Experts claim that reducing pedestrian deaths will need to involve a concerted effort to improve road design, vehicle design, increase lighting on dark roads, and update vehicle design to address a world in which there are more pedestrians crossing the street.
Distracted driving may also play a role. Distracted drivers may not be as prepared to handle the presence of a pedestrian on the road. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 3,450 people were killed in distracted driving accidents and another 391,000 people were injured in distracted driving crashes. As many as 481,000 reported using cell phones while driving.
Studies have also indicated that people driving in SUVs might be prone to engage in riskier behavior. Why? SUVs are perceived as sturdier vehicles. People may feel safer while driving these vehicles due to their high position and increased size. Yet, this added feeling of safety can actually lead drivers to engage in riskier behavior. According to a study conducted in Vienna, SUV drivers were found to be more likely to talk on the phone, drive without a seatbelt, and even found more likely to run red lights. While SUV drivers may perceive that they are safer, pedestrians and other drivers may not be safer when they are involved in an accident with an SUV. The car’s higher profile, wider front-end, and sheer size, can increase the risk to other drivers in the event of a crash.
SUV drivers who fail to consider the safety of other drivers and pedestrians on the road should be held responsible for their negligence. The Cooper Law firm are car accident attorneys in Mt. Pleasant, Texas who work closely with victims and families who have suffered due to the actions of negligent drivers. Our firm can review your case, and fight to help you seek damages for your medical costs, lost wages, and pain and suffering damages. Visit us at https://www.cooper-law-firm.com/ to learn more.
Cooper Law Firm
501 N Third St,
Longview, TX 75601
Telephone: (903) 297-0037