Drake, Hileman & Davis, PC


March 10, 2015

Earlier this month the Governors Highway Safety Association disclosed that Pennsylvania pedestrian fatalities increased sharply in the first half of 2014. According to the national report, the number of pedestrian deaths nationwide remained steady for most other states except Pennsylvania during one crucial period.

The Washington D.C.-based nonprofit found that between January through June of 2014 Pennsylvania experienced 74 traffic fatalities involving pedestrians. That number represents a substantial increase from the same timeframe in the previous year in which pedestrian accidents accounted for 53 deaths. That’s a 40 percent increase overall.

A spokesperson for the GHSA was quick to point out that the numbers are still preliminary and the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation has not yet completed their 2014 statistics. However, a P-DOT spokesperson has indicated that the pedestrian fatalities numbers are expected to mirror 2012 numbers. In that year the department record 168 pedestrian deaths.

The report also indicated that nationally pedestrian deaths are trending downward. This seems rather worrisome as pedestrian fatalities in Pennsylvania have increased in three of the past four years. National pedestrian fatalities recorded in 2013 listed a 37 percent drop in numbers since the statistic category began in 1975. In 2013 there were 4,735 pedestrian deaths nationwide.

Some of the more interesting facts found in the statistics include the revelation that greater than two thirds of the pedestrian fatalities which occurred in 2013 happened during the evening or early morning hours. Additionally, pedestrians who are at least 70 years old have traditionally experienced the highest per capita fatalities rates since 1975.

Pennsylvania residents who have been injured while walking should know a few things. Not every pedestrian accident will automatically result in successful litigation. However, pedestrians injured while using crosswalks or sidewalks may have legitimate claims. Your Pennsylvania personal injury attorney can review the facts and circumstances regarding your pedestrian accident and determine whether you should pursue legal action. If successful, you may be able to recover your medical expenses, lost wages and other costs associated with your accident.

Source: Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, “Pedestrian deaths up in Pennsylvania, report shows” Jon Schmitz, Mar. 01, 2015