Our older citizens are much more active than they were a generation ago – and walking for exercise is a favorite for this age group.
The problem is we need to make our roads safer for this age group. A study released recently by the nonprofit Tri-State Transportation Campaign found older pedestrians in Connecticut are far more likely to be killed while walking than those under 60. In fact from 2008 to 2010, 44 adults over 60 years old were struck and killed on Connecticut roadways. And while this age group makes up just 19 percent of the population, they accounted for 36 percent of all such roadway deaths. The national fatality rate for pedestrians over the age of 60 is 1.5 times the rate for younger walkers. In Connecticut, older walkers are struck and killed 2.41 times more often than younger walkers.
So what can be done?
First – we need to do a better job designing our communities to make them safer for pedestrians of all ages. With the cost of fossil fuels going through the roof and people looking for ways to stay active – it only makes sense. What does a walkable community look like?
- People of all ages have access to their community on foot.
- Parents feel comfortable about their children playing outside. They don’t worry about the threat of cars and trucks.
- Children spend more time outside – exercising and playing in a healthy environment.
- Streets and highways are safe and easy to cross for people of all ages and abilities.
- Pedestrians are given priority in key areas. Car and truck speeds are reduced to make pedestrians safer.
- Car and truck speeds are carefully monitored to ensure that those speeds match the conditions and the environment.
- Drivers operate their vehicles in a thoughtful, responsible fashion, knowing that there are severe penalties for any threat, injury, or death caused by their inattention or violation of traffic laws.
What else can be done to protect the elderly walker?
- We need to do a better job of educating the public to watch for elderly walkers – much like we do for school-age children.
- When possible, encourage elderly walkers to walk with a companion who can help keep them safe.
- Encourage our elderly family members and friends to wear brightly colored clothing when they walk – or even wear a flashing LED light to make themselves more visible.
If you or a loved one are ever injured in a pedestrian accident or an accident of any kind – always seek expert legal advice to protect yourself and your loved ones. And choose a Hartford injury lawyer carefully.
RisCassi & Davis has handled thousands of accident cases over our more than 65 years serving the people of Connecticut. Our injury lawyers have received local and national recognition for our handling of accident cases including:
- Top listing in “The Best Lawyers in America” and “Best Law Firms”
- Listing in New England Super Lawyers published by Connecticut Magazine. Less than 5% of attorneys in the New England states receive this honor
- Lifetime Achievement awards from the Connecticut Trial Lawyers Association
- Board Certification by the National Board of Trial Advocacy
If you would like a free consultation with one of our accident lawyers, contact us today. There is no obligation of any kind.