People across the state of Washington are dying while crossing the street at alarming rates, state traffic officials say. As a matter of fact, officials registered an increase in pedestrian accidents during the pandemic.
In 2002, data from the Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) shows, there were 70 deadly pedestrian accidents reported across the state. In 2021, 131 pedestrians died as a result of traffic accidents — a considerable increase.
Officials: Drivers Must Do Their Part To Protect Pedestrians
Over the years, the high rate of deadly crashes involving pedestrians has worried officials. With that in mind, the WTSC started the Target Zero campaign in 2000, which was meant as a means to raise awareness to pedestrian accidents. While the campaign was a success, officials told news reports, one third of crashes registered in the Evergreen state this past year involve intersections.
Prior to Covid, traffic officials say, deadly accidents had increased 24%. But after the pandemic, numbers looked even worse.
In 2018, 103 pedestrians were killed in Washington. In 2019, the number of deaths had increased to 107 and in 2020, 112 were killed. In 2021, the number went up again, with 131 people dying in pedestrian accidents.
Deadliest Months Are Around The Corner: Officials Ramp Up Efforts
The WTSC is warning drivers that July, August, and September are the deadliest months for Washington drivers and pedestrians. In order to fight the increase in the number of deadly accidents, officials are raising awareness to the potential risks.
Speeding, officials told news outlets, is one of their main concerns. But visibility is also an issue.
Staying alert and assuming that pedestrians will be crossing at every corner and crosswalk, drivers will be able to act proactively to avoid collisions. It is the driver’s duty to yield to pedestrians.
In our personal injury law practice, we have helped countless pedestrians and their loved ones. We applaud the effort of state traffic officials and hope that more can be done to help prevent pedestrian accidents.
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