There is no doubt that the Sunshine State is a great place to live and be outdoors. Because the weather is great for most of the year, people are able to walk to work year-round. Unfortunately, for many years now, Florida continues to have one of the highest pedestrian fatality and injury rates in the nation.
Drivers like to blame pedestrians and pedestrians like to blame motorists for Florida pedestrian accidents. The reality is that fault generally varies and is mostly 50/50. So what can drivers and pedestrians do better to minimize accidents and injuries?
First, drivers should realize that pedestrians are no match for vehicles and will be negatively affected the most when the two collide. For this reason, drivers should abide by the following five tips:
- Yield to pedestrians in the crosswalk. Do not speed up to beat a pedestrian to the intersection
- Pay attention to traffic lights and pedestrian traffic controls
- Always stop behind a school bus when lights are flashing
- Never drive distracted
- Never drive drunk or drugged
Second, pedestrians need to recognize the potential for injury from cars and take necessary precautions. Pedestrians do not always behave perfectly when sharing the road with cars. In fact, many pedestrians jaywalk because the traffic light and crosswalk seem so far away. Sadly, this is one of the top reasons why pedestrians get hit by motor vehicles. Instead of taking shortcuts, pedestrians should follow these five tips to remain safe:
- Look both ways before crossing the street
- Always be cautious while walking, even in a crosswalk
- Use crosswalks to cross the street
- Obey pedestrian traffic control signals
- Don’t listen to music, text, or use your cell phone while walking near traffic
It may be tempting for pedestrians to cross mid-block, just like it may be enticing for drivers to read a text message at the wheel. We encourage both drivers and pedestrians this summer to stay alert, obey traffic signals, share the road safely, and follow our ten tips to reduce Florida pedestrian accidents and injuries.
Have you suffered injuries due to a negligent driver, or was your loved one killed in a pedestrian accident due to a driver’s negligence? You need to find out about your rights and how to protect your interests. To talk with a trusted Sarasota pedestrian injury lawyer, call the Mallard Law Firm for a free consultation today at 888-409-3805.