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Which Cities are the Deadliest for Pedestrians?

Posted on January 19, 2016 to

Of cities in the US, Orlando is the deadliest for pedestrians, according to the report “Dangerous By Design” from the National Complete Streets Coalition.

The southeast and southwest account for the majority of the 20 most dangerous metropolitan areas for pedestrians. These cities all boomed in the years following World War II, an era when road design and transit planning favored the automobile more than walking and cycling.

The report notes that 45,284 pedestrians were killed between 2003 and 2012. The numbers have increased in the past few years, from about 4,200 deaths in 2007 to nearly 5,000 in 2012. While the researchers are unsure what caused the increase, they make a strong argument that pedestrians would be safer on “complete streets” that include crosswalks and bike and bus lanes to slow traffic and increase safety.

The report, which used a Pedestrian Danger Index, said the following are the 20 most deadly U.S. cities for pedestrians:

  1. Orlando, FL
  2. Tampa, FL
  3. Jacksonville, FL
  4. Miami, FL
  5. Memphis, TN
  6. Birmingham, AL
  7. Houston, TX
  8. Atlanta, GA
  9. Phoenix, AZ
  10. Charlotte, NC
  11. Detroit, MI
  12. Dallas, TX
  13. Las Vegas, NV
  14. San Bernardino, CA
  15. Nashville, TN
  16. Raleigh, NC
  17. Louisville, KY
  18. San Antonio, TX
  19. Richmond, VA
  20. Oklahoma City, OK

The Pedestrian Danger Index was calculated by analyzing the previous five years of available data on pedestrian deaths and the amount of local commuters who walk to work every day.

The elderly are disproportionately more at risk, according to the report. While seniors represent 12.6 percent of the population, adults ages 65 and older account for 21 percent of pedestrian fatalities.

Koonz, McKenney, Johnson, DePaolis & Lightfoot LLP is a personal injury firm helping pedestrian accident victims in the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia areas.