Although walking is an excellent way to enjoy the great outdoors and get a little bit of extra exercise, there are certain days when it might be safer to use another mode of travel. While warmer weather and sunshine often inspire Americans to walk more, resulting in a significant increase in pedestrian traffic, sunny summer afternoons during the midweek are surprisingly, not the most dangerous. In fact, the highest number of pedestrian accidents occur during the winter months, with approximately 49 percent of all deaths happening on Friday, Saturday or Sunday, and 72 percent occurring after dark.
Other Dangerous Days for Pedestrians
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that there were approximately 4,735 pedestrians who lost their lives to motor vehicle crashes in the United States in 2013, and it is estimated that another 66,000 were seriously injured. Motor vehicle crashes resulted in an average of one pedestrian fatality every two hours, and an injury every eight minutes. In Nevada that same year, 65 pedestrians were killed.
While the most dangerous days for Nevada pedestrians are Friday and Saturday, particularly during the months of October, November and December, there are other days of the year that individuals are at an even higher risk of becoming injured or killed in a pedestrian/ motor vehicle crash.
- New Year’s Day: Studies reveal that New Year’s Day is the most dangerous day of the year to be on foot. The chances of a pedestrian being killed are 1.7 times greater on New Years Day than on any other day of the year. Alcohol appears to play a significant role in the number of New Year’s Day fatalities, and not just because of drunk drivers. Intoxicated individuals are more likely to ignore traffic signals, jaywalk, or even sit or lie down on the street. In 2012, an estimated 34 percent of the holiday’s pedestrian fatalities involved an intoxicated pedestrian, while 14 percent involved drunk drivers.
- Halloween: According to the NHTSA, Halloween is consistently one of the most dangerous days for pedestrians. With a large number of pedestrians filling the streets to trick-or-treat, and an increased number of impaired party goers behind the wheel, it is not surprising that nearly 30 pedestrians are killed on October 31st each year in the United States. An analysis reveals that between 1978 and 2002 approximately 715 pedestrians lost their lives on Halloween.