During the warm months of spring and summer, numerous people throughout Missouri enjoyed the fresh air while walking instead of driving. Walking is great exercise, and many people find it preferable to go to the store, friends’ homes or other places when the weather is nice. However, the risk of getting seriously injured in a pedestrian accident doesn’t necessarily diminish once summer is over and the weather starts getting cooler again. Some people will always walk instead of drive, no matter the season. Also, children will be returning to school soon, and many will walk to school or to their bus stops.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, thousands of pedestrians across the country are killed each year. This was one of the few types of traffic accidents to increase nationwide. In Missouri, 75 people were killed and 1,276 were injured in pedestrian accidents in 2011, says the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

Student injured while running to catch her bus

Last January in Lee’s Summit, a young girl trying to make it to her bus stop in time didn’t see the car that was in the road and ran in front of it. She was struck, but fortunately suffered only minor injuries, reported Fox 4 KC. Drivers will need to be aware of these risks once school starts again.

Among children hit by cars in Missouri, most were playing in the street or crossing from behind a parked car. Older pedestrians who were hit were most likely crossing the street, either in a crosswalk or with no signal. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say the following situations are often risky for pedestrians:

  • Walking in parking lots.
  • Walking near driveways or parked cars.
  • Crossing at intersections, especially on busy city streets.
  • Walking during poor visibility conditions, such as early morning or evening or during bad weather.

Additionally, rural roads with high speed limits that are not developed for pedestrian traffic are high-risk places to walk, says Smart Growth America. Many communities across the country have recognized the need to provide safe places for people to walk, and have developed numerous pathways and other areas near roadways that are safer for pedestrians. Still, many roads remain unsafe for those who would rather walk than drive.

Contacting an attorney

Pedestrian accidents frequently result in serious injuries or worse. If you or a loved one was hit by a car, contact an experienced personal injury attorney to discuss your options.