Any motor vehicle crash can cause major injury, but some kinds of collisions are far more dangerous than others. In New Jersey, vulnerable pedestrians may suffer the worst outcomes in motor vehicle collisions when compared with drivers, passengers, motorcycle riders and even cyclists.
Pedestrians have no vehicle to protect them from the force of a collision and may suffer catastrophic injuries even in lower-speed collisions. Obviously, people walking in public cannot prevent drivers from making bad choices. However, they can make better safety decisions based on known risk factors. What are some of the top contributing factors to severe pedestrian collisions?
Alcohol consumption by drivers or pedestrians
According to federal pedestrian crash statistics, alcohol plays a role in 46% of these collisions. Sometimes, the pedestrian has had too much to drink. Other times, the driver is the one under the influence. In rare cases, both the driver and the pedestrian are under the influence during a collision.
Although it is a better choice to walk home than to drive home if you have too much drink while out socializing, you cannot ignore the way that alcohol might affect your behavior as you cross the road.
The speed of the vehicle
The faster the speed of the vehicle at the time of the collision, the more catastrophic the damage that may result. As a pedestrian, you don’t have any control over how fast nearby vehicles drive, but you can decide where you walk and where you cross the street.
Choosing roads with lower speed limits could keep you safer out on the New Jersey streets. Pedestrians who always cross at intersections are more likely to encounter vehicles slowing down or at least drivers monitoring for pedestrians.
Distracted driving and walking
Distracted walking could be almost as dangerous as distracted driving. Obviously, a driver looking down at their phone might fail to notice you and could hurt you. You can cause a pedestrian crash by using your phone while walking and stepping into traffic because you didn’t notice approaching vehicles.
Pedestrians who recognize and respect the leading causes of pedestrian crashes can potentially reduce their personal risk of getting seriously hurt while out on the New Jersey roads.