Even with tight laws and regulations enforced for the safety of pedestrians, accidents still happen. And, while no statistic can make up for the tragedies that do occur, it is particularly encouraging to see that New Hampshire ranks low on the national fatality rates for pedestrian-related accidents.
According to a report by Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), the United States has seen a rise in pedestrian deaths over the last decade. Specifically, there was a 50% increase in fatalities where, in the previous 30 years, the rate had been decreasing. But, in New Hampshire, the number of deaths has dropped since 2016. In fact, the state only had nine pedestrian fatalities in 2019. Currently, the New Hampshire pedestrian fatality rate is one of the nation’s lowest.
How to keep the numbers low
We can keep these numbers low, and aim for zero deaths, by following safety precautions both as pedestrians and drivers on our local roads. While some of the following safety tips may seem obvious to you, it is vital that we keep them at the forefront of our mind for the sake of others:
- Be aware of your surroundings
- Exercise extreme caution when visibility is low – like in cases of extreme weather or at night
- Approach crosswalks carefully
- If you are driving, do not pass a vehicle that is stopped at a crosswalk
- Never operate your vehicle under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Follow basic road laws
- Use caution when approaching a school zone
- Pedestrians should never assume a driver sees them and should always stay alert
Vehicle types may even factor into your precautions, especially regarding awareness. The GHSA report also suggests, for instance, that pedestrians are more likely to die if they are struck by a sport utility vehicle. Whatever your mode of transportation, when it comes to the safety of yourself and others, erring on the side of caution is always best.