Pedestrian Deaths on the Rise—Department of Transportation Names Distracted Walking as the Cause

The Department of Transportation has released information about the rise in pedestrian deaths and determined from their complied data that the numbers of pedestrian deaths have risen during the past few years at an alarming rate, according to them.

Attorney Michael Ehline jokingly mentions in his distracted walking article here, that Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has named the cause as distracted walking. These are people who walk while talking on cell phones, texting, listening to music or while under the influence of drugs. These are things that cause a walker to be less alert to traffic and other obstacles that can result in harm or death.

The data that the Department of Transportation has reviewed shows there were 4,109 pedestrian fatalities in 2009, but then the number increased by 2011 to 4,432. The largest increases have been in 22 cities, with New York showing an increase of 51 percent, Los Angeles with a 42 percent increase, followed by Chicago with a 30 percent increase. Ehline says that the study fails to take into account that he vehicle codes in each state are different regarding pedestrians, and that this appears to be a power grab by the feds, to grant tax dollars to the states, in order to assert more control. Sort of like the mafia saying: “I am gonna make you an offer you can’t refuse” type of thing.

Ehline reports that the complied information by the Department of Transportation shows that every 3 out of 4 pedestrians that are killed occurs in urban areas and that 2 out of 3 fatalities happen at places other than intersections. The other information that was garnered was that about 70 percent of pedestrian deaths occur between the hours of 8:00 p.m. and 12:00 a.m.  So yes, crowded cities are dangerous. But as Ehline points out, people are better off using common sense and blogging about staying safe, rather than hire more government employees to administer some worthless safety program that truly only REALLY serves to empower government.

Along with the death rate increase, pedestrian injuries have increased to 69,000 and the U.S. Product Safety Commission has said that there have been a reported 1,500 walkers seeking emergency medical care after being harmed in a pedestrian mishap.  National Highway Traffic Administrator David Strickland said that the rise in pedestrian deaths is everyone’s problem and drivers need to obey driving laws.  And that was Ehline’s point.  There is already a law for that, and there is already a social compact between civilized people. Now it is time to start abiding by that compact.

DOT Secretary Foxx plans an advocacy summit in the fall and joining in this summit will be the national nonprofit America Walks coalition group of advocates to better conditions for people who walk. We support working with a non profit, and we want to make sure pedestrians are staying safe as well. But we are leery of more big government imposing their intellectual, no real life experience, will upon us common Americans who truly built this country with our bare hands.

If people are walking around so distracted that a car will run them over, maybe there is some other problem besides drinking, or being distracted. Maybe both sides, car and walker, need to get back to basics.  Remember how we felt aft 9-1-1? We cam together as Americans. Recently, we have seen politicians trying to divide us by race, gender, and sexual preference. They have created an environment of hate and distrust and set back race relations by years.

People need to throw the bums out and start looking at eachother as humans who have value. Perhaps the, there will be less “distraction”, more self worth, and more productivity from the welfare class who seem to hate everyone, especially the one’s paying their “benefits” that they did not even earn. So get out there and look out for eachother.


LA Times Article About “Distracted Walking”



About Author


Ehline Michael
Michael Ehline is a prolific blogger on California and international tort law. He has been a guest on CNN, discussed in major news publications like Forbes, Circle of Legal Trust, Personal Injury Warriors, and International Cruise Victims. He has lobbied congress on behalf of injured consumers, served as a United States Marine, and won millions of dollars for his clients. This blog discusses Ehline's insights and musings on all aspects of negligence law as it relates to all things "accidents." Ehline can be reached at (213) 596-9642.