Ohio’s fight against pedestrian deaths

Pedestrians in the United States are increasingly at risk for serious injury and death as the result of accidents with vehicles — and Ohio is taking note.

Dayton, in particular, is studying the issue after a series of accidents in which pedestrians were killed. All in all, there have been 717 Ohio pedestrians killed between 2013 and 2018, with the number climbing steadily over time. In 2013, only 88 walkers in the state were killed and 2,262 were injured. In 2018, 133 walkers were killed and almost 15,000 were injured.

Dayton, like many other urban areas, has redesigned much of its layout to accommodate pedestrians and cyclists as their numbers increase. That means that the local police are also clamping down on drivers who are taking unnecessary risks behind the wheel.

What’s causing all the accidents involving pedestrians? It doesn’t seem to be the increase in foot traffic so much as it is an increase in chronic problems with speeders and distracted drivers.

Law enforcement agencies in Dayton as well as in other cities are combating the issue by increasing the lighting in heavily trafficked areas, narrowing lanes and adding speed cameras. They’re also stepping up and stopping distracted drivers whenever they see them.

Many people — including law enforcement and public officials — believe that smartphones are a big part of the problem. Drivers use them when they’re behind the wheel even though they know they shouldn’t. The precious seconds they waste sending a text or looking at directions can cost a life.

If you were injured in a pedestrian accident with a vehicle or a loved one was killed, find out more about your legal rights.