Long before we learn to balance on a bicycle or drive a car, one of our
first milestones is learning how to walk. The “shoe leather express”
is always available, fairly economical (though some of those Air Jordans
can cost as much as vehicle down payment) and good for the environment.
The thing is, many American roadways fail to provide for the safety of
pedestrians. And year after year, the Sunshine State posts alarming numbers
of fatalities of those on foot.
Most dangerous states for walkers based on the Pedestrian Danger Index
- South Carolina
- North Carolina
A 2014 report from Smart Growth America found that from 2003 to 2012, over 47,000 people were killed and an estimated
676,000 were injured while walking on streets across the country. That
means that a pedestrian was hit by a car approximately every eight minutes.
In the same time period, Florida was the site of 5,189 pedestrian fatalities,
representing nearly 18 percent of all traffic fatalities here.
Florida led the nation as the most dangerous state for walkers based on
the “pedestrian danger index” (PDI), which measures the likelihood
of a pedestrian being hit by a vehicle and killed. Calculated from the
share of local commuters who walked to work and the most recent five years
of data on pedestrian fatalities, the national average PDI from 2003 to
2012 was 52.2.
Florida’s PDI was substantially higher, at a disturbing 168.60. In
fact, four of the top five most dangerous metropolitan areas to walk were
- Orlando/Kissimmee – PDI 244.48
- Tampa/St. Petersburg/Clearwater – PDI 190.13
- Jacksonville – PDI 182.71
- Miami/Fort Lauderdale/Pompano Beach – PDI 145.33
With walkers accounting for about 23 percent of all traffic-related deaths
between 2003 and 2012, the Miami area also came in fifth for large metro
areas ranked by "percentage of traffic deaths that were pedestrians."
To make matters worse, the age group with the greatest pedestrian fatality
rate is one of Florida’s largest populations. Adults aged 65 or
older were the victims of one in five pedestrian accidents.
With numbers like these, patterns are difficult to determine. The accidents
happen at all times of day, on busy highways and rural roads, in and out
of crosswalks, where sidewalks are available and where they aren’t.
Just a sampling of recent headlines reflects the reality that while Florida
is a haven in many ways, it’s not without its risks.
Whether you are a resident or a visitor, if you have been injured in a
pedestrian accident or if you are the survivor of someone who was killed
by a negligent driver, the attorneys at Stabinski & Funt, P.A. can
review your case and discuss all available legal options. As one of South
Florida's most respected and oldest law firms, we have helped many
people sort out their legal rights, responsibilities, and remedies. For
45 years, we have been the trusted advocates for countless pedestrian
accident victims, and we are highly experienced in handling a wide range
of personal injury cases. We also work on a contingency basis, which means
that if there is no recovery, there is no fee or cost to you. If you wish
to learn more about how our firm can be of assistance to you, we encourage
you to contact us for a free consultation by calling 305-643-3100 or
filling out a case evaluation form.