Pedestrian fatalities increase in 2020

An average of nearly 18 pedestrians per day were fatally struck by passing vehicles in 2020 according to a recent analysis. The 6,529 fatalities represented a 4.7% increase over 2019.

While the numbers are alarming, the most dangerous cities and states will raise more than a few eyebrows. The Deltona – Daytona Beach–Ormond Beach area is the worst city for pedestrian fatalities.

“This epidemic continues growing worse because our nation’s streets are dangerous by design, designed primarily to move cars quickly at the expense of keeping everyone safe. The result in 2020 was a significant increase in all traffic fatalities, even with less driving overall due to the pandemic,” according to the report, prepared by the Smart Growth America/National Complete Streets Coalition.

Although Tampa – St. Petersburg – Clearwater, Jacksonville, Orlando – Kissimmee – Sanford makes the Top 10, Florida is not the worst state. That distinction belongs to New Mexico with Albuquerque ranking as the number two city.

Although everyone is affected by dangerous street design in some way, this burden is not shared equally. Despite other changes, the pandemic perpetuated existing disparities in who is being killed at the highest rates: Black and Native Americans. Older adults and people walking in low-income neighborhoods were struck and killed at much higher rates than other populations in 2020, as with past years, the report noted.

“The report is very instructive and is likely useful in making coach drivers more aware, particularly when they are driving in an environment known for pedestrian strikes,” said Ken Presley, Vice President of Industry Relations/Chief Operating Officer at United Motorcoach Association. “Only last month a 19-year-old college student was fatally struck by a motorcoach
in Charlotte.”

To view the entire report, click here.

Share this post