Treacherous tourist traps: Florida earns 3rd worst ranking for pedestrian safety

by | Jun 25, 2024



Study reveals urgent need for improved infrastructure and better driver education


Florida ranks as the third most dangerous state for pedestrian safety in the United States, according to a new study by injury lawyers Bader Scott. The analysis, based on data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) for 2021, sheds light on the alarming rate of pedestrian fatalities across the nation and particularly in Florida.

The study revealed that Florida recorded 817 pedestrian deaths from traffic accidents in 2021, translating to a fatality rate of 3.75 per 100,000 people. This places Florida just behind New Mexico and Louisiana in the ranking of the deadliest states for pedestrians, and the second most pedestrian deaths overall behind only California. But California has a significantly higher population, making it much more safe on a per capita basis. New Mexico topped the list with a fatality rate of 4.82 per 100,000, while Louisiana followed with a rate of 3.98 per 100,000.

Florida’s high ranking is a cause for concern, particularly given its large population and the influx of tourists throughout the year. The Sunshine State’s pedestrian fatality rate is significantly higher than the national average, underscoring the need for urgent measures, including emphasis on pedestrian right of way during driving lessons, better driver education, and improved infrastructure to improve pedestrian safety.

“To mitigate these risks and reduce the number of pedestrian fatalities in the future, it is essential to focus on improving infrastructure by investing in safer pedestrian pathways, better lighting, and clearly marked crosswalks. There must be stricter enforcement of traffic laws across all states, including speed limits and pedestrian right-of-way,” said Seth Bader, founder and owner of Atlanta-based Bader Scott Injury Lawyers. “Moreover, public campaigns to raise awareness about pedestrian safety can encourage both drivers and pedestrians to be more cautious.”

South Carolina and Arizona also featured prominently on the list, ranking fourth and fifth respectively, with pedestrian fatality rates of 3.66 and 3.41 per 100,000. Other states like Georgia, California, and Texas, while having lower rates, still reported significant numbers of pedestrian deaths, highlighting a nationwide issue.

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