One of the worst areas in the country for pedestrians is in California. Overall, Bakersfield was ranked as the seventh most dangerous city in the nation regarding pedestrian fatalities. However, it is one of just two of the 10 most dangerous metro areas for pedestrians located outside of Florida. Overall, California ranks 16th in pedestrian deaths. Of the states in the top 20, California is one of 10 that planned for a higher pedestrian fatality rate in 2017 than in 2018. Most states plan to reduce the number of pedestrian deaths in the year ahead.
On any given day during any season in every community across the nation pedestrians are out walking. It is important that while pedestrians are out and about that they are safe. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in 2016 alone, 5,987 pedestrians were killed in accidents with motor vehicles. It is staggering to know that approximately every 90 minutes a pedestrian was involved in a fatal accident in this country.
Taking a walk in California can become unexpectedly dangerous when a negligent or distracted driver causes a severe crash. There has been a rise in the number of pedestrian deaths in fatal motor vehicle accidents, and some experts note that an increase in distracted driving may be a major cause of the change. Since 2009, traffic deaths overall have risen by 11 percent, but pedestrian fatalities have grown by 46 percent in the same time frame.
Road safety experts in California and around the country are extremely concerned about a recent and alarming rise in pedestrian fatalities. Pedestrian deaths in the United States increased by 9.5 percent in 2015 and another 9 percent in 2016, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and a report released in February by the Governors Highway Safety Association reveals that they remained high in 2017.