Pedestrians in Indiana get exercise that is good for their cardiovascular health. They keep their transportation costs low and can potentially avoid frustrating experiences in traffic. Unfortunately, pedestrians often have to travel in close proximity to motor vehicles, and drivers aren’t always safety conscious.
If a car collides with a pedestrian, the person outside the vehicle is likely to suffer major injuries, while the occupants of the vehicle may walk away unscathed. Pedestrians, therefore, need to be aware of what contributes to their risk so that they can take steps to keep themselves safer. For example, they need to be aware of the fact that there are certain places that statistically result in a higher risk of a pedestrian crash than others.
High-density urban roads
The majority of fatal pedestrian collisions occur on high-density roadways in urban centers with higher speed limits. Pedestrians may need to cross six lanes of traffic or more to get to a business on the other side of the road. They may encounter motorists moving at high speeds, which increases the likelihood of a severe injury. More vehicles also mean a greater possibility of someone not noticing a pedestrian at all as they approach an intersection or crosswalk due to the blind spots created by other vehicles.
In theory, parking lots don’t see a ton of traffic, and motorists should maintain relatively low speeds while parking or exiting to the street. Unfortunately, parking lots see a lot of distracted driving and erratic maneuvers. A significant portion of severe and fatal pedestrian crashes every year take place in parking lots specifically.
Rural roads with high speed limits
Rural roads tend to have higher speed limits and less lighting, both of which can be dangerous for pedestrians. Additionally, because there will usually be less police presence and fewer traffic cameras, drunk drivers and others engaged in unsafe behavior often travel on rural roads instead of urban roads whenever possible.
Pedestrians can’t just avoid all parking lots, high-density urban roads and rural roads. However, if they walk or jog in areas with higher risk, they can take steps to protect themselves, such as crossing at crosswalks and making themselves as visible as possible. Knowing where risk is highest can help people make safety a top priority whether they walk, bike or drive.