Pedestrians Now More at Risk on the Road than Car Drivers

Reckless car drivers and their passengers are not the only ones at risk on the road. Unfortunately, even pedestrians simply walking on the streets are put in the same amount of danger, if not more.

According to the latest Governor’s Highway Safety Association report, 10 percent more pedestrians were killed in 2015 compared to 2014. And that’s just data for one year apart.

Between 2009 and 2014, pedestrian fatalities in the country were found to have experienced as much as 19 percent, from 4,109 to 4,884, specifically. This was from the annual Spotlight on Highway Safety Report, and squarely puts pedestrians to be the biggest victims of traffic fatalities for the past 25 years.

Stark Irony

What is ironic about all of this, however, is while pedestrians are put in more danger, driving has been determined to be at its safest in the country today than it has ever been. Safety mechanisms and technology, both in the cars as well as on the roads, all assist the driver to make better driving choices. In some cases even, if the driver is unable to make that driving choice in the nick of time, the car’s smart technology takes over and implements the action automatically.

It could be said that this is the clear advantage of drivers from pedestrians. Drivers have all these gadgets paying attention on the road in their behalf even if they may not be, but pedestrians don’t. So if they are walking distracted because of their smartphones, and they are not paying attention to where they are going, then it is definitely no wonder how they can end up figuring in an accident.

Pedestrians’ Right to Walk Free

Experienced legal practitioners, such as those from Stephens, Anderson & Cummings do recognize the importance of ensuring that pedestrians are able to walk safely and securely out on proper parts of the road. That’s why personal injury lawsuits are the order of the day in the event that someone unfortunately falls victim to bad driving.

Despite the findings of the report seemingly putting the blame on the pedestrian as well, advocates of pedestrian safety also insist that this trend is also traceable to the fact that the environment is not just unsafe, but is actually hostile.

Investigation Finds Amtrak Safety Mechanism Not On During Accident

After a full year of investigation, it has now been found that the Amtrak train which figured in a fatal accident last year did have sufficient safety equipment which could have prevented the disaster. Unfortunately, however, this same switch which could have slowed the speed of the train was apparently not switched on at the time of the accident.

Failure of Preventive Measures

The said switch, otherwise known as the Positive Train Control (PTC), was confirmed to be integrated into the train’s mechanisms with the specific purpose of helping the driver maintain control of the train in the event that it speeds past the limit–a situation that was exactly what happened with the ill-fated Amtrak.

Driver’s Liability

According to the findings of the NTSB investigators, the driver, engineer Brandon Bostian, was not under any illegal substance, whether drugs or alcohol, and was also not distracted on his cellphone.

There were speculations, however, that Bostian was supposedly distracted instead by reports from the radio traffic regarding a separate incident of rocks being thrown at a SEPTA commuter train. Bostian had earlier clarified that he wasn’t “super concerned” and that because he hasn’t encountered or seen any such situation himself, he “felt it unlikely that it would impact” him.

Recalling the events that unfolded on that day, however, proved to be a challenge as Bostian himself, six months after the crash, described it to investigators to be a “very foggy memory.” He did, however, state that while he did not exactly recall what happened, he does remember the feeling as it happened.

He however refused to call the sensation as “dream-like” because the term might be misconstrued as to come to mean that he was feeling sleepy, and hence the accident occurred. What was clear to him, according to his narration, was that he felt his body lurch “towards the right side of the engine” and that he “was going too fast around a curve.” It was as a response to this feeling that he then put the brake on.

The associates of Stephens, Anderson & Cummings recognize that safety mechanisms such as the PTC are highly important elements in modern-day rail safety development.

The Amtrak accident left eight people killed and 159 injured.

Mail Carriers Face Double the Threat from Unfriendly Neighborhood Dogs

Mailmen being chased off by neighborhood dogs have been an age-old trope in many comedy scenes. In real life, however, it’s not nearly as funny, especially when the mailmen are literally being attacked by dogs.

According to reports, the number of Columbus mail carriers that have been attacked by dogs has seen a significant increase by as much as double from 22 in 2014 to 43 in 2015.

Up in Arms

Mail carriers have been taking the threats seriously. From being able to identify which houses have dogs in them, and which dogs are particularly ferocious, they can plot out a safer route or system for them to deliver their mail without any untoward incident.

Some have even shared their stories of traumatic attacks that not only left them physical scars but also psychological ones as well.

For the Owners

On the part of the owners, it is ultimately their responsibility to ensure that their pets are well contained inside their homes, especially if they are aware that their furry friends do not take too kindly to strangers.

Fort Worth’s trusted personal injury lawyers are keen to remind animal owners that they can very well be held liable and accountable for any damage that their pets could inflict upon another person. It could even become worse if it is determined that the owners did not implement the necessary precautions as required, especially for aggressive dogs.

Suspended Mail

The postal service also are not taking this threat to their employees sitting down. If your dog attacks a letter carried, you just might find your mail delivery suspended. To avoid missing out on any important mail or package, make sure that your dog is placed in a separate room when the mailman arrives.

If the mail carrier fails to feels safe delivering your mail to your home, then you should just pick your mail up from the Post Office. If the dog is freely roaming in the neighborhood, then this may affect even the delivery of your neighbor’s mail as well, so be considerate and keep your pets secured.