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How a Lack of Crosswalks can Lead to Death

Everyone knows that pedestrians have right-of-way in almost all situations. It’s hard not to grant them this right, considering an accident between almost any vehicle and a single individual could render that individual seriously hurt, if not killed, while barely scratching the car. While it’s not to say that all vehicle-pedestrian incidents are completely the drivers’ fault, they’re often not left suffering from soaring medical bills or property damage. It is the duty of every driver on the road to maintain a level of safety for the individuals around them that are not in cars themselves. Unfortunately for citizens in San Antonio, the statistics for pedestrian injuries are not in their favor.

While it is a little old, a 2012 report put San Antonio at 18 in a list of 51 of the most dangerous metropolitan centers for pedestrians. An article by the Rivard Report broke down the numbers of the report for us: 373 pedestrian deaths in San Antonio alone during the years 2003 to 2012; for Texas overall, that number is 4,192. The report apparently looked into the concept of different street designs helping more pedestrians stay safe in these areas, and San Antonio did not do well in that regard. In almost all cases of dangerous areas, or areas where the most deaths occurred, the road was designed with fast vehicles in mind around blind turns, crosswalks, and bus stops. A simple design change could’ve cleared up these problems. Furthermore, the issue of pedestrian fatalities more often than not affects the elderly, the young, the disabled, and minorities at significantly higher rates. One in every five pedestrian deaths is an elderly person. Despite the fact that elderly people only make up about 12% of the total population in San Antonio, their deaths as pedestrians make up 20% of all pedestrian deaths. Moreover, the third leading cause of death for children is pedestrian deaths. The difference between 2012 and 2011 was a national increase of 6% of pedestrian deaths for all traffic fatalities.

The simple addition of crosswalks, bicycle lanes, and sidewalks dramatically decreased the numbers of deaths happening in certain dangerous areas. This lack of change elsewhere is resulting in the deaths of our youth and elderly, as well as minorities and it should not stand. Being hurt in an accident like this, is a dire, tragic situation. An attorney can help a grieving family receive compensation and the punitive damages against a negligent city planner could help to ensure that changes are made before more people are hurt or killed.

When simple designs can prevent deaths, it’s astounding that the changes aren’t being made as quickly as possible. The help of a trained attorney can end up getting you and your family back on your feet all while fighting those responsible for the injury or death. Safety of pedestrians should be in the hands of those who could hurt them, but it’s always best to keep an eye out as well. Stay safe out there!