Pedestrian traffic fatalities increased in 2020 despite fewer drivers

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Pedestrians were killed at an alarmingly higher rate in 2020 than in previous years, according to a new report issued by the Governors Highway Safety Association. The report revealed that more pedestrians were killed during the first six months of 2020 than during the same time period in 2019, despite a massive reduction in drivers on the road due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This unsettling rise in fatalities is in line with the 46 percent increase in pedestrian deaths from 2010 to 2019. By comparison, all other traffic-related deaths nationwide increased by just five percent during the same period.

The report also pointed out that nighttime walking is far more dangerous than daytime walking. According to the report’s research, 3 out of every 4 pedestrian fatalities in 2019 happened while it was dark out.

Traffic Deaths in Chicago Spike During the Pandemic

In Chicago, the number of pedestrian deaths has remained stable at 39 to 40 deaths per year. However, the total traffic deaths in the city jumped to 139 in 2020, a 45 percent increase from the previous year. Statewide across Illinois, 2020 was the deadliest year for traffic fatalities since 2007. 

Many state and city officials place the blame for this increase on a rise in speeding drivers due to less crowded roads. Beginning March 1, 2021, the City of Chicago began issuing fines to drivers caught going at least six mph over the speed limit through its speed camera program. According to the Chicago Department of Transportation, this increased enforcement is in direct response to the massive increase in traffic deaths in the city over the last year.

What We Can Do to Reduce Pedestrian and Traffic Fatalities

To reverse this distressing trend, new engineering and traffic technologies are being considered nationwide. Chicago’s speed camera program is just one example of a traffic safety program that has been proven to reduce traffic and pedestrian injuries and deaths. 

Other cities such as Carmel, Indiana have replaced traditional intersections with roundabouts, which has been shown to be effective in reducing speeding and pedestrian fatalities.

What a Chicago Personal Injury Attorney Can Do for You

Our Chicago personal injury attorneys at the Blumenshine Law Group have experience in representing injured pedestrians or motorists. If you or a loved one has been injured as a pedestrian or motorist, an attorney with experience handling pedestrian and motorist injuries can be a tremendous help during this time. 

While you are recovering from your injuries, you are likely losing wages. You may be taking pain medication and not be able to engage in any of your normal activities. The stress of not knowing how you are going to pay your bills can take a toll and even increase your recovery time. Our personal injury attorneys can greatly relieve your concerns.

Our winning track record and proven litigation strategy ensures our clients get their just compensation. If you have been injured, call us today at (312) 766-1000, text us at (312) 313-3466, email us at [email protected] or contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation with one of our attorneys.

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