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Pedestrian Safety in Seattle

By Hardwick & Pendergast, P.S. on June 5, 2014

Seattle Pedestrian SafetySeattle is considered one of the safest large cities in the country for pedestrians. According to a Smart Growth America study, the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area was ranked 49 out of 51 on the list of most dangerous cities for pedestrians. On the other end of the list were the most dangerous cities for pedestrians such as Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville, Miami, and Memphis.

Over the 10-year period covered in the study, there were over 47,000 pedestrians killed nationwide. Between 2003 and 2012, there were 375 pedestrian deaths in the Seattle-Tacoma-Bellevue area and 678 pedestrian deaths statewide. The 10-year study also shed light on where the most fatal crashes occurred and what age group was at the highest risk of death.

More than 45 percent of fatal Washington pedestrian accidents occurred on roadways with a speed limit over 40 mph and 12.5 percent were on streets with a speed limit below 30 mph. Only 0.6 percent of pedestrian deaths reported in Washington car accidents occurred on streets with a speed limit of 20 mph or lower. Therefore, it is much safer to walk along Seattle roadways with a lower speed limit.

Pedestrians of all ages are in danger of being hurt in an accident, but older adults 65 and older account for 26.2 percent of the pedestrian fatalities despite making up only 11.7 percent of the state’s population. In fact, older pedestrians in Washington died at a rate of 3.2 per 100,000 compared to 1.22 per 100,000 for residents under the age of 65.

Whenever you are out walking, no matter your age, make sure you practice cautious behavior. Never assume that drivers see you or that motorists will yield the right of way. Even in a relatively safe pedestrian city like Seattle, there may still be dangerous drivers around who are distracted, fatigued, speeding, and/or intoxicated.

If you are ever involved in a Seattle car accident, make sure you notify the authorities and contact an experienced pedestrian accident lawyer who will ensure that your legal rights and best interests are protected. Medical expenses and rehabilitation costs can add up after a pedestrian accident. A skilled injury lawyer will help you secure maximum compensation for all your significant losses.

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