Tim Current learned firsthand the perils that exist for pedestrians on Kansas City roadways. Current has been struck by a car while jogging not once, but twice. He managed to walk away from both accidents with only minor injuries, but he is now understandably nervous when he takes to the road on foot. Mr. Current, an avid jogger who logs over 60 miles a month, does not feel safe anymore. He believes the danger stems from people not paying attention while driving. He sees drivers texting, talking on the phone, and chatting to other people in the car, all while they hurry to reach their destination.
The number of pedestrian accidents in the Kansas City region has climbed over seven percent from 2008 to 2012. Kansas City is not alone in this increase. Nationally, pedestrian accidents, including injuries and fatalities, have increased ten percent in the past few years. This rise in the number of pedestrian accidents has troubled many safety experts, as it comes at a time when fatal accidents, including drunk driving, distracted driving, and aggressive driving accidents, are down.
David Goldberg of Smart Growth America, a group against sprawl, offers one possible explanation for the disturbing trend. According to Goldberg, the increase in pedestrian accidents is the result of how we have developed, building wider roads designed to move more traffic, while placing pedestrian safety to the side. A recent study conducted by Smart Growth America ranked Kansas City the 21st most dangerous place for walking.
Some cities in Kansas are already working to narrow their roads and widen sidewalks. They are also attempting to enforce crosswalk zones and add signage to enhance safety. Prairie Village is even considering placing decoy pedestrians to catch drivers who ignore cross streets.
A study conducted by Mid-America Regional Council found that pedestrian accidents are most likely to occur in urban areas, concentrated around down town areas. The downtown highway look along Independence Avenue and areas from Midtown to the Country Club Plaza were home to the most pedestrian accidents.
Other researchers have discovered another alarming factor in pedestrian accidents: pedestrians are not always paying attention to their surroundings. Like distracted driving, distracted walking comes with some risks. Pedestrians who are texting, talking on the phone, listening to music, or otherwise not watching what is occurring around them, could accidentally walk in the street, cross outside the crosswalk, or fail to see an oncoming vehicle. Several recent Kansas City accidents have occurred after distracted pedestrians darted out in front of cars, leaving them no room to stop.
Those injured in a pedestrian accident caused by the negligence of another will have the right to recover for their medical bills, lost wages, pain and suffering, and more in a personal injury action.
Contact Kansas City Personal Injury Attorney Michael R. Lawless Today for a Free Consultation
If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident, the Lenexa, Kansas Personal Injury Lawyers at the law firm of Michael R. Lawless, P.A. can help. Our personal injury attorneys have represented clients in a wide range of accidents for over 27 years. We will carefully examine the circumstances surrounding your pedestrian accident and determine whether negligence played a role in the accident. We will then guide you towards a full recovery. To schedule a free consultation to discuss your potential accident case, contact Michael R. Lawless, PA by calling our office locally at (913) 681-5566, or you may call us toll-free at (800) 734-3771. You may also contact us online and we will respond to your inquiry as soon as possible.