It’s hard to imagine what the friends and family of a car accident victim must feel when they hear about the death of their loved one. It’s one thing to die behind the wheel, but another to be killed while you’re out for a walk. That’s what happened in Miami Gardens recently, when 18-year-old Ali Elliance tried to cross the street, but was struck and killed instead. This tragic death might have been avoided, and police are now investigating who was at fault. The driver who hit the young man is cooperating fully with police, and made no attempt to flee the scene.
Statistically, Florida is the absolute worst place to be if you want to survive a walk down the street. In fact, the number of dead have skyrocketed, reaching a new high in the last ten years. Miami is ranked the eleventh worst place to be if you’re a pedestrian.
This isn’t the first pedestrian accident in Miami, and it won’t be the last. Luckily, automated vehicles are coming. Millions of hours have been logged into driverless software and vehicles so far, and they’re already proving themselves in the eyes of their makers. They’re safer than vehicles driven by humans, at least in the areas of the country that enjoy perpetual sunlight. All that’s left to do is get them on the road so that everyone can see for themselves. Hopefully, pedestrian accidents will be a thing of the past soon enough.
5,142 people were killed while walking from 2004 until 2014. Sadly, the epidemic of pedestrian-involved car accidents is prevalent all over the country. Between the same time period, over 46,000 Americans were killed while walking. You’re more likely to be struck by a passing vehicle than you are from any natural disaster. It’s enough to make you think about the risk involved just taking a walk down the street. Sure, most of us recognize the dangers inherent in driving, but walking? Surely that should be safe. The statistics say otherwise, and they show no signs of reduction for the foreseeable future.
If you have older members of your family who enjoy walking, you should let them in on the facts: the elderly are 50 percent more likely to be killed while out for a walk. Whether or not that’s a result of older people being more likely to take a break from smartphones and TV is a question that might come to mind, but here’s another: why do minorities make up nearly half of all these deaths? These are questions that should be answered while we work to reduce the number of dead.