Thursday, June 2, 2011

Maryland Is 15th Most Deadly for Pedestrians

ped.jpgA national study released this week by the advocacy group Transportation for America ranks Maryland as the 15th most dangerous for pedestrians out of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. Baltimore also earned distinction by being recognized as the 32nd most dangerous metropolitan area for walkers out of the 52 considered by the most recent version of the report 'Dangerous by Design." I was surprised, frankly, that Baltimore wasn't ranked higher considering the city's dubious high scores in murders, drug addiction, teenage pregnancy and STD's. I should know better. Baltimore never disappoints unless you are an O's fan. The report actually singles Baltimore out as an example of a city where pedestrian deaths have increased during the past decade. From 2000 to 2009, a period when total traffic deaths decreased by six percent, pedestrian deaths increased from 43 in 2000 to 62 in 2009.

Florida is actually the most dangerous state for pedestrian accidents, scoring a 182.8 on the index, while Maryland scored 76.4. Jeesh, you better look both ways before crossing the street in Florida; Orlando, Tampa, Jacksonville and Miami were the four most dangerous areas. In contrast, Vermont, the safest state, scored 11.2. In comparison to other countries, the United States is almost twice as dangerous as Australia. Experts believe the reason for the dangerous conditions are road designs which focus on maximum vehicle speed as opposed to pedestrian safety.

1,057 pedestrians died on Maryland roads from 2000 to 2009. 481 of those deaths occurred in Baltimore City. It is not surprising that in an earlier study Maryland was noted for having one of the lowest rates of spending for pedestrian safety projects in the United States. If you or someone you know has been injured or killed in a pedestrian accident contact the Maryland pedestrian injury lawyers and wrongful death attorneys at Portner & Shure.