Arizona 4th in the nation for pedestrian deaths

There are many benefits that come with living in Arizona and one is the fact that the climate is favorable for many months out of the year. This is among the reasons why Arizona has a high number of pedestrians in comparison to many other U.S. states. However, the state also sees a high number of pedestrian deaths and crashes, with Arizona now among the top five states in the nation for pedestrian fatalities.

Per Arizona PBS, Arizona now sees the fourth-highest number of pedestrian deaths out of any state in the nation. Many pedestrian-involved car crashes also lead to serious injuries. Pedestrian fatalities are also rising rapidly across many parts of the state, with pedestrian deaths almost tripling statewide between 2009 and 2019.

Contributing factors

What are some of the factors contributing to Arizona’s rising number of pedestrian crashes and deaths? Some believe the problem is due in part to the fact that Arizona has a high number of large, arterial roads that lack clear crossing areas. When city planners designed many streets in Arizona, they did so with vehicle traffic, rather than foot traffic, in mind. As a result, many streets lack adequate or safe places for pedestrians to cross.

Potential solutions

Research indicates that there are several things communities might do to better protect pedestrians. Statistics show that communities that install speed cameras, such as Scottsdale and Paradise Valley, see lower numbers of pedestrian deaths. Enhancing lighting near poorly lit crosswalks may also help reduce these numbers.

While crosswalks and signaled intersections are common sites for crashes involving pedestrians, the majority of pedestrian deaths occur away from these areas.