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2019 pedestrian deaths may have seen 30-year high

As a pedestrian, you run a higher risk of injury in Springfield, Illinois. Perhaps you have already been injured at the hands of a negligent driver, and you’re wondering how you can move forward with a claim. Many are in a similar position as yours, but instead of a personal injury claim, they will file a wrongful death lawsuit.

Pedestrian fatalities have been going up continually since 2009, and 2019 was clearly no exception. The Governors Highway Safety Administration used traffic death data for the first half of 2019 to come up with a preliminary analysis, the results of which are summarized below.

Pedestrian deaths reach three-decade high

The GHSA estimates that 6,590 pedestrians died in the U.S. in 2019. This is 5% more than in 2018, and compared to 2009, it represents an alarming 60% increase. It’s also the highest that the number has been since 1988. By contrast, all other traffic deaths rose 2%.

A significant portion (47%) of the pedestrian fatalities were in California, Arizona, Texas, Georgia and Florida: five states that, together, compose around one-third of the total U.S. population. Fatality rates were highest in Florida, New Mexico and Hawaii while they were at their lowest in Wisconsin, Vermont and Idaho.

More deaths may be due to SUVs, phone use

The GHSA report cites several reasons for the escalating numbers. One is that advances in phone technology are creating more sources of distraction for drivers.

Another is that SUVs and light trucks are growing in popularity. Light trucks made up 48% of the new vehicle sales in 2009 but 69% of them in 2019. Because of their design, these vehicles are more liable than ordinary cars to injure pedestrians’ head and neck; such injuries tend to be fatal.

Local representation for injury victims

You survived the crash but now have to focus on physically recovering. You may want a lawyer who regularly deals in pedestrian injuries to handle your case, if a case is indeed possible. The lawyer may evaluate your case in light of the state’s traffic laws and bring in investigators to prove the driver’s negligence.