Miami and South Florida’s attractive weather and beautiful beaches draw millions of tourists and new residents each year. The influx of tourists and the area’s growing population, combined with Miami’s picturesque and convenient walking paths, have caused an increase in pedestrian traffic. The increased traffic poses dangers for pedestrian and drivers.
Miami Ranked Fourth in Pedestrian Accidents
Given South Florida’s popularity and increased pedestrian traffic, it is therefore no surprise that the Miami metro area is a leader in pedestrian accidents in the United States. A recent report from Smart Growth America found that the Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach area ranks as the fourth most dangerous metro area for pedestrians in the United States.
The report found that from 2003 through 2012, there were 1,539 pedestrian deaths in South Florida. During this same period, there were a total of 6,690 traffic-related deaths. From 2008 through 2012, there were 2.58 pedestrian accidents for every 100,000 Miami residents. What is more, Florida ranked 5thin pedestrian fatalities among persons 65 and older.
Surprisingly, the Miami metro area ranked higher than more populated areas, such as Los Angeles and New York City. From 2007 to 2012, the study found that only 1.8% percent of people in Miami commuted by foot, compared to 2.7% in the Los Angeles area and 6.25% in the New York area. The New York area, which included Northern New Jersey and Long Island, was actually relatively safe considering that it ranked 48th for pedestrian danger among the largest metro areas.
Steps You Should Take to Protect Yourself
While some pedestrian accidents are unavoidable, there are steps you can take to reduce your risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident. Every pedestrian should obey Florida’s traffic laws. These laws include following traffic signals, using sidewalks when provided, and abstaining from walking on the part of the road reserved for motor vehicles. While these steps seem basic, unfortunately, many people do not follow these laws, which expose them to a greater risk to be injured.
Despite one’s attempts to take all necessary precautions, injuries can still occur. These injuries can have severe, long-term health consequences. If you are walking and are injured by a motor vehicle, you should take certain steps to protect your rights. These include reporting the accident to the police, taking pictures, exchanging information with the driver, identifying potential witnesses, and seeking necessary medical attention.
Contact A Miami AttorneyIf you or someone you know has been injured by a negligent or reckless driver, contact The Perez-Gurri Law Firm to handle your case. Our firm has experience handling all types of pedestrian accidents in Miami and South Florida. From investigating your case to handling your insurance claim, our firm will help you through the process to help you obtain the compensation you deserve.
Our firm is located in Coral Gables, Florida. Visit our office today or call us for a free initial consultation.