Last year, the nationwide pedestrian death toll reached a 40-year high as 7,624 people were killed in traffic accidents across the country. Recent data from the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) shows a staggering 77 percent increase in pedestrian deaths since 2010. This is more than three times the 25 percent rise in all other traffic fatalities combined during the same time period.
What is causing this escalating death rate and how can it be reversed? To help drivers and walkers minimize their respective risks, here is the latest information on Michigan pedestrian accidents
Recommended reading: The Latest Michigan Car Accident Statistics: What Drivers Should Know
In 2022, Michigan State Police reported the following information on pedestrian accidents:
Recommended reading: What You Need To Know About Michigan Crosswalk Law
Increased popularity of SUVs and trucks
One of the biggest culprits is the growing number of SUVs and trucks on the roads in Michigan and across the country. In fact, the major U.S. automakers have discontinued many of their smaller car models as more buyers opt for larger vehicles such as SUVs and pick-up trucks. According to a study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, the higher front-end profiles and massive weight of these vehicles increases the risk of serious injury or death for pedestrians in the event of a crash.
Post-pandemic increase in reckless driving behaviors
Despite fewer cars on the road since the pandemic, fatal accidents rose 15 percent between 2019 and 2022. While the pandemic sparked a rise in risky driving behaviors such as speeding, drunk/drugged driving and failing to wear seat belts, this deadly trend has continued.
Surge in road rage and aggression
Many individuals experienced high levels of stress and anxiety as a result of the pandemic, which caused an increase in aggressive driving and road rage. While the isolation and economic damage has subsided in large part, many drivers are still expressing their negative emotions behind the wheel.
Rise in distracted drivers and pedestrians
Pedestrians, like drivers, are also subject to distractions, which can lead to disastrous consequences. Someone looking down at a cell phone may not see an oncoming car or a “Don’t Walk” signal in time to avoid being hit. In addition, headphones and ear buds can block out honking horns and other warning sounds. And, when both drivers and pedestrians are distracted, the risk of a serious accident increases significantly.
Determining who is responsible for a pedestrian accident can be challenging, which is why it is important to hire an experienced attorney if you or a loved one is injured after being struck by a motor vehicle.
Liability depends on a variety of factors, such as which party had the right of way when the accident occurred. This can be complicated because Michigan has no specific laws regarding the lawful use of crosswalks. Instead, most municipalities follow the Michigan Uniform Traffic Code, which states that pedestrians on the same half of the roadway as an approaching vehicle the right of way. Additionally, pedestrians who are walking lawfully and obeying traffic signals in a crosswalk also have the right of way. However, it may be difficult to establish exactly what occurred in the aftermath of a serious accident.
Pedestrians may be partly responsible in certain situations, such as the following:
Drivers are usually at fault for pedestrian car accidents in the following circumstances:
Recommended reading: Do You Need A Lawyer For A Car Accident That Was Not Your Fault?
If you are injured in a Michigan pedestrian accident, you need an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer on your side. We will stand up to the insurance companies and fight for the benefits and compensation you deserve. Our knowledgeable attorneys have the skills and resources to build a winning case that ensures a successful outcome for you and your family.
Pedestrian accident law is complicated, but finding the right Michigan pedestrian accident attorney is simple.
Don’t let the legal clock run out. Start your case today by clicking on the link below or calling 1-800-CALL-SAM for a free, no-obligation consultation with a member of our legal team.
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