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Distracted Driving Puts Pedestrians and Bicyclists at Greatest Risk

While distracted driving puts everyone on the road in danger, bicyclists and pedestrians are at greatest risk for being killed in a crash, according to a new study.

Researchers at the University of Nebraska Medical Center examined data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System involving distracted driving crashes. The analysis revealed that the number of pedestrians struck and killed by distracted drivers skyrocketed from 344 to 500 from 2005 to 2010, which represents an increase of nearly 50 percent. The number of bicyclists killed jumped from 56 to 73 over the same time period, which is a 30 percent increase.

As reported by the Claims Journal, white males ages 25 to 64 accounted for 60 percent of the pedestrian fatalities and 83 percent of the cyclist deaths, according to the study. The majority of the crashes occurred during daytime hours, in urban locations, and outside of marked crosswalks.

The study highlights that while motor vehicle fatalities are at record lows, pedestrians and bicyclists still face significant risks from distracted drivers.

“The evidence on policies curbing distracted driving is very mixed and some research suggests policies are just not working – that we’re not really making a dent on distracted driving,” he said. “If that’s the case, we need to think about marked crosswalks, bike paths – the environment that tries to create a separation between pedestrians and bicyclists with traffic,” said Fernando Wilson, Ph.D., associate professor, UNMC College of Public Health.

If you or someone you love has been seriously injured in a motor vehicle accident, get in touch withour San Diego personal injury lawyer.