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Pedestrian Deaths Stay High in 2018
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This graph of pedestrian deaths in traffic accidents in the U.S. looks remarkably like the trend in homicides: peaking in the early 1990s, then falling, then soaring a little over 20% in 2015 and 2016 (also the peak Black Lives Matter-Ferguson Effect years when homicides went up 22%), then leveling off under Trump.

From Streetsblog:

Pedestrian Deaths Reach New High — Drivers Entirely to Blame
By Angie Schmitt
Mar 1, 2019

Pedestrians are dying in epically high numbers, with driver distraction one of the causes.

Pedestrian deaths were up 35 percent last year, compared to a decade ago, thanks to the rise of heavy SUVs, population growth in regions that do not prioritize walking and distracted driving, a new report shows.

The Governors Highway Safety Association estimated that roughly 6,227 pedestrians were killed last year, the highest pedestrian fatality figure since 1990 and 35 percent more than were killed 10 years ago.

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  1. 2009 seems like the right year for smart phones to start making an impact

  2. Cato says:
    @ben tillman

    2009 seems like the right year for smart phones to start making an impact

    Right, a major factor. Another factor is the number of homeless who shamble across the street, outside of crosswalks, in the dark. The number of homeless picked up during the Obama recession. And those who went on the street then, have not tended to come back into the labor market during the recovery. So more potential victims of motorists.

    • Replies: @Johnmark
  3. anonymous[354] • Disclaimer says:

    Just anecdotal, but several anecdotes (does that = data?) here in Central New York…lots of people, almost always women, marching across city streets against the light with their eyes or ears glued to a cell-phone…add the head-scarf, hajib, or sari in summer, whatever, and you have a really dangerous situation.

  4. How many more car deaths need to occur before you turn in your cars?

  5. anon[409] • Disclaimer says:

    “…….. the rise of heavy SUVs, population growth in regions that do not prioritize walking and distracted driving……”

    Well one out of three’s not bad.

    I heard this on my local talk/crank/kvetch radio station – KFI. When they got to the part about SUVs…….I just shook my head. As if a Ford Galaxie 500 couldn’t dust a guy just as well?

    Let’s not forget distracted WALKING. Also……and it may have been our very own ISteve…….who proposed the incremental increase in silent electric vehicles might have added to the totals. It sure will in the future.

    Don’t look for that number to decline anytime soon, despite LA’s Metrosexual Mayor, Eric Garcetti, pleading about “Vision Zero”.

  6. trelane says:

    Our citizens are staying off the streets which may make scoring particularly difficult even with this year’s rule changes…

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  7. @anon

    You fail to understand why SUVs are more dangerous than large cars.

    • Replies: @anon
    , @Kratoklastes
  8. @anon

    NYC’s deBlasio also has a Mission Zero or Vision Zero or whatever. Recognizing no doubt that dead pedestrians pay no taxes.

  9. J.Ross says: • Website

    >with drivers completely to blame
    Come drive around Detroit and see if you still believe that.

  10. population growth in regions that do not prioritize walking and distracted driving

    Seems odd for regions to prioritize walking and distracted driving. One or t’other maybe, but both is asking for trouble


  11. Anon[257] • Disclaimer says:

    Pet peeve: graphs like this with a non-zero y-axis.

    • Agree: Colin Wright, trelane
    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
  12. A corresponding stat is that hit-and-run deaths are up since 2009, rising faster than overall traffic deaths.

    Are Americans suddenly indifferent to people they hit with their cars? Of course not. My theory is that illegals ( and other vibrants who drive with revoked or suspended licenses) are behind much of this.

    There is some misleading talk about how H&Rs declined after California started giving licenses to illegals, as if our refusal to give illegals licenses forced them to leave people for dead after they hit them. Of course, anyone who would do that should be deported, not rewarded.

    The truth is that illegals know they won’t get in trouble for driving w/out a license ( thanks, Dems), but they will get in trouble for running someone over.

    And illegals who can’t produce the paltry documentation required for a sanctuary license still drive illegally, and still don’t want to be deported. If they have to leave someone for dead by the side of the road, so be it.

    • Replies: @vinny
    , @J.Ross
    , @stillCARealist
  13. @trelane

    Rats, used up my active buttons for the hour – LOL

  14. anon[409] • Disclaimer says:

    actually, no, I don’t. Please learn me. Apart from the difference in Cruiserweight vs Heavyweight.

    • Replies: @Semperluctor
  15. @Anon


    I’ve told them before here, to no avail. (Granted, I doubt Steve made the graph.)

    Are you an engineer, Miss #257?

  16. @anon

    …the incremental increase in silent electric vehicles might have added to the totals.

    When we joined a car-share club which offered Priuses, they warned us to be extra vigilant should we see blind pedestrians in the city, because they couldn’t hear us.

    It didn’t matter as much outside the city, as the combustion motor is running, and even the blind don’t walk.

  17. Population growth is not sufficient to over-ride the broader sweep in this instance, but absolute numbers of deaths is never hugely relevant (unless you’re one of the deaths, or their next of kin or loved ones).

    Between 1990 and 2018, the US population grew by 31% (249.4m to 327.2m); as such, maintaining the 1990 fatality number would have represented a pretty vast improvement in actuarial risk of being a pedestrian.

    The big drop in pedestrian fatalities ’08 and ’09 was partly due to fewer driver-miles (because of the GFC); check out the chart below –

    Since the downtick in driver-miles was temporary, the sharp reduction in pedestrian fatalities should have been expected to be partly temporary too…. and anyone with a lick of sense ought to have expected pedestrian fatalities to move back up towards its long-run (downward) trajectory.

    The long-run downward trajectory is due to technological improvements in cars… better braking, especially: even “insecurity wagons” (the gigantic vehicles insecure men buy: ‘SUV’) brake better than a mid-90s sedan did when it was new.

    I recently drove a CurrentYear insecurity wagon for half a day (to pick up a new squat and chinup cage), and it braked far better than my 2002 Renault Scénic (my little “Tūtae“).

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  18. vinny says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    “Are Americans suddenly indifferent to people they hit with their cars? Of course not.”

    I’m not so sure about that. Count the number of people on this very thread who will blame pedestrians distracted on their phones, or jumping out into the street as if pedestrians have no care for their own skin.

    Whereas, if you suggest people driving 2 ton machines with 200 hp drive should do so at the speed limit and stop completely at stop signs, as a way of being considerate to those on the public right-of-way who are not protected by 2 tons of steel, everyone will think you’re worse than Jussie.

    • Replies: @slumber_j
  19. b.t.o says:

    In Toronto we have doubled our population in the last 20-25 years (guess how) with political gridlock preventing any transit improvements, or other things (like tolls) that might address congestion.

    This massive increase in traffic volume does not combine well with our gradual reversion to third world driving norms, but of course we would rather self-immoliate than acknowledge that legacy Canadian’s may be different in any way than more recent Canadians, so its simply never mentioned except in vague ways, like “the roads are crazy these day!”

    The end result is a lot of people who are taking risks to get home a bit faster, as well as lot of cab, uber and delivery drivers who learned to drive in a mad max universe — and of course a ton of dead pedestrians.

    or maybe its just the cellphones, but the kinda deaths that are happening around here seem to be more like “83 year old woman naively crosses the street with the right of way and is mowed down by a dump truck blowing through a red light to make a right turn” variety.

  20. Anon[321] • Disclaimer says:

    A four-wheel drive car is good on deep snow, but my current SUV is lousy on ice. If it decides to slide, it’s going to slide, and its larger mass works against my ability to handle it. I know my car makes me a bigger threat on the road to pedestrians if dummies decide to dart out in front of me when the road is slick. I used to have a Volkswagon Rabbit (rear wheel drive only) that handled ice better than any vehicle I’ve ever owned before or since. I could drive it and handle it precisely on surfaces that were too icy for me to even walk on. I could drive it on a skating rink. The smaller mass and good German engineering made a big difference.

  21. J.Ross says: • Website
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    There is a huge involvement of Mexicans in traffic problens. That chick that got liberty secured for the entire American military in Japan by speeding on the wrong side of the road was a Mexican. There are numerous stories of Mexicans drunk driving and particularly of them driving on the wrong side of highways. Mexico has the same road orientation as us, so where does this come from? Dutch courage telling them, “No problem Holmes, just make a U’ie?”

    • Replies: @stillCARealist
  22. @Autochthon

    CurrentYear insecurity wagons are more dangerous than CurrentYear large cars, but a CurrentYear insecurity wagon is less dangerous than a ‘representative’ large car (which in the US would be roughly 12 years old).

    Like for like (i.e., matched by year), insecurity wagons are less safe than large sedans, but the very high rate of vehicle renewal for insecure 5’8″ men, means that the fleet age for insecurity wagons is lower than the fleet age for other private vehicles.

    The difference is only a couple of years (8.3yr for insecurity wagons, 10.1yr for automobiles), but it still means that the the average “SUV” is probably on a par with the average automobile, when comparing safety as measured by stopping distances, vulnerability to rollover etc.

    It might be hard to square this with the unarguable fact that insecurity wagons are over-represented in both pedestrian fatalities and driver/passenger deaths in motor vehicle accidents, but that’s a different issue.

    Now as to the fuckwit holding the steering wheel… all bets are off.

    In other words, it’s not the vehicle characteristics that make insecurity wagons ‘dangerous’… it’s the driver characteristics.

    5’8″ men (and normal-height women) who, for the first time in their lives get a sense of what it’s like to look down on the world… all of a sudden they’re the most competitive people on the planet.

    Let’s just acknowledge if they had been that competitive in aspects of life that make a difference, every one would be a Nobel Prize-winning Ninja-Jedi-Special-Forces neurosurgeon rockstar.

  23. Roger says:

    The rise seems to coincide with the rise of the Apple phone.

  24. @Kratoklastes

    But 2015 and 2016 were very bad for pedestrian deaths, just as they were very bad for homicides. Coincidence?

    Another possibility is that the new cars of the 2010s aren’t as safe as they ought to be. The insurance companies have the data to answer this question, but I haven’t read anything in the press on this one way or another.

    • Replies: @vinny
    , @Kratoklastes
  25. vinny says:
    @Steve Sailer

    New cars seem quite safe for occupants. Anecdotally, it seems people are often walking away from terrible crashes that were devastating a few years ago. And the data I’ve seen suggests that deaths for car occupants has been constant despite the rise in miles traveled and the vast increase in pedestrian deaths. My own state has responded to this increase in safety by raising speed limits, wasting gas and resulting in a few more catastrophic crashes.

    But, the safety of those outside cars has gotten quite worse. All these new cars are bigger, faster, with taller fronts (hitting pedestrians on the chest more often than in the legs), and, of course, almost impossible to see out of.

    With no one able to see out of their much bigger, much faster cars, stuff like this happens constantly:

  26. @anon

    I think that the likely explanation is that SUVs hit higher and fling the pedestrian forwards and under the wheels, whereas a much lower car throws a pedestrian upwards into the air and onto the hood, which hood is now per modern regulations, deformable. A pedestrian will likely survive a 20 to 25 mph collision with a large car, but not one wth an SUV.

    • Replies: @Bill
    , @Autochthon
  27. I, too, stayed high for most of 2018

  28. Wilkey says:

    It’s easy to blame smartphones for the increase since 2008, since the timing is just so perfect. But then what explains why pedestrian deaths were so high in 1990 (much higher than now, per capita), and why they fell so dramatically from 1990 to 2008?

    One dumb thing people do when they’re drunk or on drugs is not pay very much attention to traffic. Perhaps the graph matches the fall and then rise again of drug and alcohol abuse better than it matches increased smartphone use.

    The high 1990 numbers coincide with peak crack cocaine epidemic. Just looking at opioid abuse I found several different graphs with different numbers of opioid-related deaths, but they were all pretty consistent: a steady increase in deaths from about 2000-2013, then a huge 50% jump from 2013-2015, right around the time of the second spike in opioid deaths (oh, and pot became increasingly legal right around that time, too). Perhaps the 2008 spike was due to smartphones and the later spike is due to increased drug use?

  29. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:

    Federal CAFE and “safety” regulations have made large sedans and station wagons unpopular so people went to SUVs, and now they are hooked.

  30. @Steve Sailer

    But 2015 and 2016 were very bad for pedestrian deaths

    “Were very bad”?

    Just by eyeball, they look to be consistent with a return to levels associated with a more normal level of driver activity generally, give or take.

    The 2008-09 retrenchment – particularly outside of the segment of the economy that sucks directly on the tax tit – was far more pronounced, and the return of private-sector activity was far more sluggish, than people generally think (because ‘people’ take their view from things like GDP statistics, which include all the tax-tit-suckers).

    So a return to something like normal driving patterns for us non-tax-tit schlubs, helped drive the pedestrian death rate back towards it’s long run downtrend (and maybe overshot a tad… that happens when “random shit” is the main driver).

    , just as they were very bad for homicides.


    Probably. Coincidences can be interesting, though.

    There is an extremely weak relationship between homicides and economic activity, but a reasonably strong one between
    private sector economic activity and driver-miles (strongly positive, in all subsamples); and
    ⓑ driver-miles and deviations from a long-run downtrend in lethal vehicle mishaps.

    It’s a well-understood (among statisticians) problem of small numbers.

    I realise it sounds cold to talk as if the number of dead pedestrians and the number of homicide victims is “small”, but relative to population it’s tiny.

    The US has a “mid-tier” murder rate of around 6 per 100,000 – or 0.006% (that drops to 0.005% when you exclude the ~1500 homicides by cops).

    Likewise, the population-wide risk of being a dead pedestrian is tiny: around 0.002%.

    Neither of these numbers is stationary in the statistical sense of the word, i.e., having a fixed mean and finite variance. They are basically random walks – both with a very slight negative drift.

    From time to time, two random walks will show very brief periods of correlation; two random walks with drift (where the drift is in the same direction) will be spuriously correlated over long periods, and broadly uncorrelated on lengths of run less than the ratio of the drift parameter to the largest parameter in the ACF/PACF (that ratio determines, in part, how much volatility there is “around” the drift). But the odds of a set of 2 datapoints that are correlated… reasonably high.

    I’m mostly a pedestrian (and a cyclist), so my natural bias is in favour of there being a problem. The data says otherwise, and when that happens, the data should always win.

    (FWIW I do the vast bulk of my bike riding indoors on a trainer… even though I know the probabilities, I don’t want to die ironically at the hands of a fuckwit in an insecurity wagon; it would be ironic because it’s a very low-probability event).

    Lastly… there’s an element of “Darwinian Filter” in this. maybe it’s helping, in some tiny way, to weed out people too stupid (or lazy, or ignorant) to bother to take the minimum set of precautions necessary to stay alive.

    Pretty much everyone knows that cars are big and heavy and hard, and that they move fast and will hurt you if they hit you.

    So… if you end up in he way of one (and it hasn’t mounted the pavement or otherwise lost control), maybe you weren’t trying hard enough to stay alive. (“You” being, of course, the generic “you”)

    The number of pedestrian deaths that are entirely the fault of the pedestrian, is much smaller than the number of cyclist deaths that are entirely the fault of the cyclist. And yet the number of cyclistg deaths is much smaller than the number of pedestrian deaths.

    Under the “Least Cost Avoidance Principle“, pedestrians bear the primary burden of risk mitigation in normal interactions with traffic.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  31. @Wilkey

    Another effect of widespread cell phone usage is that medical services are nowadays summoned very quickly.

    Additionally, such services arrive in the form of a mobile ER, as opposed to a simple conveyance (ambulance) as in days of old.

    Yet we had 40,000+ traffic deaths last year, and are headed for record highs.

    • Replies: @William Badwhite
  32. @Kratoklastes

    Here’s Miles Driven by years:

    The changes are much milder than the changes in the pedestrian deaths. If you convert it to pedestrian deaths per million miles driven the graph would look much the same.

  33. Visibility in modern era cars is poorer than it used to be some decades ago, although I expect what is relevant for pedestrian safety is front-facing visibility. Surely that hasn’t changed much?

  34. Old Prude says:

    The number of idiots shuffling on the shoulder, dressed in black, trying to get to their job at Dollar General, having lost their license due to drinking and dope is remarkable. Didn’t anyone teach them in grammar school to wear reflective clothing? It seems inevitable I will clip one of these fools one rainy dark morning.

  35. It kind of correlates with the rise of the smartphone, but it also correlates with the loss of hope after the GFC … maybe more pedestrians are committing suicide by car. A brief glimmer of hope after Trump took office that might explain the small improvement, but then a realisation that he is an empty-suit neo-con tool offering no real change sent the toll back into ascent.

  36. @anonymous

    “… women, marching across city streets against the light with their eyes or ears glued to a cell-phone…add the head-scarf, hajib, or sari in summer, whatever, and you have a really dangerous situation.”

    Dangerous situation? I’d call it Darwinian natural selection.

    • Agree: Jim Christian
    • Replies: @Jim Christian
  37. @b.t.o

    “… but the kinda deaths that are happening around here seem to be more like ’83 year old woman naively crosses the street with the right of way’ ….”

    One who lived in the Third World would readily know that for all practical purposes there is no such thing as Right of Way in the Third World. You’d think those First World people who were so smart to import so many from the Third World to add its vibrance to their culture might spend some time learning what they are inviting.

    I once took driving instruction for a licence in a European country, and part of the training was to look in the mirrors in a particular sequence before turning; the sequence was predicated on right of way, which until then was rigidly followed by the natives; because of the sanctity of right of way, there were relatively few stop signs by American standards. I kept vexing my instructor by always making one more view to the right, i.e. to the side that would not have precedence, and finally explained to him that that was the side some dumb-a$$ immigrant like me who didn’t know, remember, or even didn’t care about the right of way rules was going to hit us from.

    • Replies: @Old Prude
  38. I moved up to Boston from a lousy traffic environment in Northern Virginia, a region I drove a couple of million miles in 1981-2009. I can’t argue pedestrian deaths, they’re always in the papers here in Boston. What’s freaky about this region is the oddity of all accidents up here. Leading the way to me for oddball stuff are bicycle riders’s accidents up here. They’ve given bicycles lots of legal leeway with lanes and laws awarding them right of way on two lanes and so on. With all this, riders seem to turn up in the news crushed by trucks and buses making right turns every week. In the winter time for Chrissake. You could do a study on them. Like they’re going to beat the bus or truck passing on the bigger vehicles’ right, to and through the intersection? Maybe they make it, but sometimes, to spectacular and gruesome headlines, they do not. And of course, they always show the bike that was run over by 4 or 6 wheels to fire the imagination as to the fate of the corpse, usually a chick for some reason. A chick was so thoroughly mangled a couple of weeks ago, witnesses vomited. A pancaked skull was the choice comment in the Herald. You should have seen the bicycle. The truck was uninjured.

    Other oddities include the many cars that wind up in the middle of a houses’ living room. Another oddity is the sheer number of police on the side of the road are killed just writing tickets or tending to breakdowns. Lotta coppers get killed in New England in the traffic up here.

    Pedestrians? All routine, most of them are crosswalk violations and jay-walking from between cars. Those folks were just idiots. And while we have our share of drunken hit-and-runs, I have zero sympathy for idiots. If the pedestrians being killed don’t care, why the hell should I? I’m bad, I know. But in a world made entirely too safe, we aren’t filtering out the stupid fast enough anymore. Bicycles, cars and pedestrians are the last good, reliable method. Tried-and-true, Darwin lives.

  39. @The Alarmist

    It’s all good to me. We’ve made the world too safe, especially for the children. Who then grow up to be the pedestrians and bicyclists and automobile drivers we read about every single day, many of them brilliant people, educated, you know, the SMART ones.

  40. OT: Armenian-American ‘nonprofit’ scammer sells US visas to countrymen, has naturalized citizenship threatened, says, “That actually bothers me.”

    Hey! I wonder if it would ‘bother’ immigrants enough for them to refrain from scamming the country that generously awarded them citizenship?

    • Replies: @Trevor H.
    , @Clyde
  41. @Finspapa

    Well, really just those high capacity SUVs, which serve no legitimate transportation purpose.

    • Replies: @Wilkey
  42. @b.t.o

    B.t.o., I went to the Toronto RV and Camping Show on Saturday. The International Centre was anything but. It was full of Legacy Canadians and everyone was in a great mood about that. No Asians, blacks, Soviet flatheads or Pakis so everyone was friendly, parking was crowded yet civilised and my wife and I spent a lot of time chatting with complete strangers about travel, the gear involved and personal experiences with RV parks in Florida, Arizona and the Maritimes. It reinvigorated the spirit. And unlike the parking lot at Fairview Mall it wasn’t Death Race 2000 walking back to the car and driving out of the lot.

    • Replies: @UrbaneFrancoOntarian
  43. slumber_j says:

    Count the number of people on this very thread who will blame pedestrians distracted on their phones, or jumping out into the street as if pedestrians have no care for their own skin.

    I’m very much on the pedestrian side in all of this in general, but yeah: here in NYC pedestrians step off the curb while staring at their phones all the time.

    Fortunately–in Manhattan at least–drivers tend to be pretty careful about walkers. But not always…

  44. @PiltdownMan

    BMWs have always had excellent visibility. Your photo example comes from the time when they and many German cars were boxy with tall greenhouses. I owned two like that, and they were great. That company has always favored the driver. Those models even had dashboards angled toward him, because he is the one who needs to see the instruments and use the controls.

    However, even back then, there were lots of other makes with mediocre visibility. Other car makers were not as concerned as BMW about anything logical. That era featured a lot of stylish, swoopy cars with little windows and zoomy-looking instruments that came out of a high school boy’s notebook.

    One factor today is the increased thickness of A-pillars on all cars. Those are the structural elements between the windshield and the side windows. Now they are built to be stronger and also to be able to contain airbags. My last bimmer, a 5 series, had those. Those pillars are now thicker than the space between your eyes, which means that they always block your natural ability to see around them. This can interfere with your immediate ability to notice a pedestrian in the typical location for one, in front and slightly off to the side. If some idiot is stepping off his path to your right front, or innocently crossing there on your shared green light, the right A-pillar can hide him from you at the crucial moment.

    The key to pedestrian safety is pedestrians maintaining situational awareness, and as I’ve hypothesized recently here, people on the street are acting more black and not bothering to take responsibility for their own safety.

    • Replies: @mikeInThe716
  45. @PiltdownMan

    Excellent illustration of the changes, P.D. When buying a vehicle like the bottom one, you’d be wise to get the back-up camera option, as now, you pretty much NEED IT.

    Back in the day, you sent your kids to the “way back” to spot traffic for you.

    • Replies: @Buzz Mohawk
  46. Trevor H. says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    Yes and no. What you and I may consider scamming is simply the natural order of things to this person and in the country he comes from.

    This is part and parcel of our nation’s proud transition from a high-trust to a low-trust society. Soon everything will be all about greasing palms and kissing @$$. Our fearless leaders wouldn’t have it any other way, else it would indeed be headed some other way.

  47. Clyde says:
    @Ghost of Bull Moose

    As alleged in the indictment, Boyadjian ran a non-profit organization called Big Apple Music Awards Foundation, based in Rego Park, New York. Boyadjian used the Big Apple Music Awards Foundation as well as formal and informal Armenian music industry contacts in the United States and Armenia to perpetuate the scheme. Boyadjian and others solicited Armenian citizens who wanted to come to the United States and charged them between $3,000 and $15,000 to be included on the Form I-129 Petitions. Boyadjian and other associates in Armenia acquired fraudulent performer certificates and organized staged photo sessions where the aliens wore traditional Armenian folk outfits to make it appear as though they were traditional Armenian performers.

    After being trained how to defeat U.S. visa interviews, the individual aliens presented these certificates and photos to U.S. consular officers during their visa interviews. Once the Armenians entered the United States, some would pay Boyadjian and her associates additional money to be included in another fraudulent petition asking for P-3 visa extensions. Some aliens have overstayed their visas and remain unlawfully in the United States.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
  48. Trevor H. says:

    While I share your distaste for–even strong aversion to–SUVs, I fear that resistance is a bit quixotic. Sadly, they are everywhere now, and if you’ve been to Europe you’ll know that they’re even taking over in old city centers which were laid out in medieval times.

    In their favor, I will admit that their tires and suspensions are well-suited to our crumbling infrastructure, and their aggressive aspects and anti-social bulk (and black glass) reflect well our society’s newfound general hostility.

    • Agree: slumber_j
    • Replies: @ricpic
  49. @Achmed E. Newman

    Safe or not, the Family Truckster was great for road trips.

  50. Rapparee says:
    @ben tillman

    Certainly looks like it. They seem much more distracting and addicting than older cell phones.

  51. @Buzz Mohawk

    I think you’re correct that the key here is pedestrian situational awareness. It amazes me that large percentages of walkers and joggers don’t attempt any sort of eye contact with drivers. When walking/running about the streets of N Buffalo or the burbs, I’m very distrustful of all vehicles – I won’t wear earbuds in both ears unless I’m in a park.

    That said, visibility from the driver’s seat has taken a step back in the last 2 decades. Large A and B pillars along with smaller windows are necessary to comply with crash standards, but pedestrians suffer. And, in many states, almost any non-blind adult can drive (with or without a license) and irresponsible driver behavior is mostly ignored. People get away with crazy stunts with 3-ton vehicles that, if done with a firearm, would put you in jail for a year.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    , @Rapparee
  52. See, the answer is to do what AOC (AKA The Boss) says and outlaw cars. If everyone is required to take the train and/or walk, no one will get hit by cars. Maybe get hit by a train, but if we don’t turn to socialism we will all die by 2030. Or something…

  53. @PiltdownMan

    Last year I bought a 2007 Honda Accord. The A pillars have airbags in them, and the thickness needed to accomodate that has created a forward blindspot that I have never experienced before. At 4-way stops now, I often can’t see cars coming from the left, and I had to learn to move my head around to make sure I am not missing something. The safety measure of providing more airbags has produced a hazard that could lead to me hitting something I didn’t see.

    I always buy older used cars, so by the time a trend like this arrives to me, it is already pretty widespread.

    • Replies: @Lugash
    , @TomSchmidt
    , @jim jones
  54. @Kratoklastes

    Why would the size of the vehicle be anything other than a marginal factor contributing to the cause of death in vehicle on pedestrian interactions? It makes more sense to blame heavy Essyuvees in vehicle on vehicle collisions resulting in deaths, but I don’t see the significant difference when it comes to large machine at high rate of speed hitting human interactions.

    • Replies: @Lugash
  55. @PiltdownMan

    I think a major factor is that for many cars (especially trucks/Essyuvees/crossovers) the driver is elevated at or above the eyeline of the average pedestrian. In that circumstance there’s a lot that you can’t see even if you’re paying attention. Your view is obscured on all sides below your windows for an extended range outward from the car.

    Contrast this to a low-slung sports car like a 911, where you’re essentially in a recumbent position and your eyeline is below that of even children pedestrians – you’re looking up at the world and seeing lot more of what is around you in spite of a small-ish windshield angled backwards for aerodynamics.

  56. @Wilkey

    It’s easy to blame smartphones for the increase since 2008, since the timing is just so perfect. But then what explains why pedestrian deaths were so high in 1990 (much higher than now, per capita), and why they fell so dramatically from 1990 to 2008?

    It’s just a guess, but I’d surmise that pedestrian deaths might be a lagging indicator of white flight and suburbanization – people fleeing urban areas because of black crime means fewer people walking fewer miles on sidewalks and in crosswalks near vehicular traffic (and instead getting into cars themselves – there is a correlation between suburbanization and vehicle accidents and deaths). As we know, the urban crime wave peaked in 1994, and then there was a decline. Sometime in the mid to late aughts there was a noticeable gentrification of those formerly abandoned areas contributing to an increase in pedestrian activities at all hours, presenting more opportunities for vehicle-on-pedestrian interactions and deaths.

    I’d also guess that the way kids were parented through 1990 was different than after – in the 1980s, even in spite of the kidnapping hysteria there were lots of kids just entertaining themselves outside in both urban and suburban spheres. Into the 1990s you’re starting to get helicopter parenting of children from smaller families, and parents carting kids around to organized sports and activities and play dates and such.

  57. Barnard says:

    Car control, in the form of forcing into mandatory driverless cars has a great deal of support among the elites. They plan on forcing it on us sooner than you think.

  58. Tim says:

    I agree that a lot of this is from immigrant drivers, but I also think a lot of those being hit are Central American immigrants.

    I don’t know if this is cultural–like littering–who just dumbness, but Central Americans just seem to walk on the side of the road at hit a lot.

    Last time I was in Manassas, VA at night I swear I almost hit, like, three little brown people. It’s like they don’t even think about the danger.

    • Replies: @UrbaneFrancoOntarian
  59. Wilkey says:
    @Redneck farmer

    ‘Well, really just those high capacity SUVs, which serve no legitimate transportation purpose.”

    You don’t have many kids, do you?

    I grew up in Mormonland. I knew (and know) a lot of families with 4/6/8 kids. Try squeezing that many kids (plus all their sundry items) into something smaller than a Suburban. Something that will also handle decently on snowy roads.

    Granted that most people who have large SUVs *don’t* have 4+ kids, but that’s an entirely different matter.

    • Replies: @Achmed E. Newman
    , @Anon
  60. @Ghost of Bull Moose

    Immigrants and homeless.

    If you come from a country where driving is all about aggression and chaos (much of the world) then that’s how you’ll drive here… until you get yourself or someone else killed.

    Also, have you noticed the huge uptick in trash and litter along the freeways? Again, it’s only logical that if you import a lot of people who are used to letting their litter go, then you’ll see more of it on your roadsides.

    The homeless in my area, and all adjoining areas, are wandering through the streets, high and filthy. They leave their trashy encampments for others to clean up. Sort of like the old CA Indians who would just move after they’d befouled a locale. Or even medieval royal courts with a disgusting moat. Anyway, the fact that they’d be hit by cars doesn’t surprise me at all. A friend had a homeless guy step out in front of her and she wrecked her car trying to avoid him.

  61. @J.Ross

    car racing is a big deal with young men, young Mexican and Filipino men especially. Around here the wild young Slavs like it too.

    Racing on public streets and highways is incredibly dangerous and stupid. So is driving under the influence… of drugs as well as booze.

    What’s my list up to now? Who can I blame other than people like myself?

    Combinations of such

  62. res says:

    Thanks for mentioning visibility! Here is a brief discussion:

    I know in my car the width of the A pillar causes problems because when I am at a stop sign it tends to be right where a pedestrian entering the crosswalk is.

    I am even more bothered by the trend in rear visibility. Some more on that:

    • Replies: @Glt
  63. Lugash says:
    @Alec Leamas

    Car-pedestrian fatalities are much more likely if you go under the vehicle rather than over. You’re much more likely to go under a SUV, or any vehicle if you’re short.

    Europe is also requiring crush space between the hood and engine in new cars. It’s quite noticeable on new Mercedes and BMWs.

  64. Cortes says:

    Is there a way to capture reliable data on “near misses” involving pedestrians walking into traffic whilst engrossed in their mobile phones?

    My guesstimate is that within the last year I’ve witnessed eight “near things.” Mainly young and female.

    I estimate also that I’ve seen about the same number of people miss their bus through failing to pay attention to the traffic.

  65. @Finspapa

    We need pedestrian control. Like back in the ’60s when people waited for the car to go by before stepping off the curb. Can’t make any money off individual responsiblility.

  66. @mikeInThe716

    As a pedestrian crossing a street, I often raise my hand and point directly at the eyes of drivers who might run me over without noticing me. Arm-raising tends to trigger brain reflexes even in peripheral vision and I can often see drivers who hadn’t noticed me flinch.

    • Replies: @res
    , @J.Ross
  67. Lugash says:
    @John Mansfield

    I always buy older used cars, so by the time a trend like this arrives to me, it is already pretty widespread.

    I’m seriously considering a 2001 Camry as my next car purchase, just for visibility purposes.

  68. GU says:

    Third-worlders (legal or otherwise) making up an increased share of the population surely accounts for a significant portion of this trend.

    Also, as the Boomers age, I wouldn’t be surprised if *their* distracted driving proves the most dangerous, due to a combination of slower reflexes (aging) and a lower baseline familiarity with both technology and multitasking.

  69. @anonymous

    Make sure to not damage your brake pads in a situation like that!

  70. res says:
    @Steve Sailer

    That’s a great idea. The human visual system is very good at detecting motion. I think it can also be helpful to move the whole body a bit. Say small steps perpendicular to the driver’s line of sight.

    One thing I am seeing from pedestrians now (even the ones who seem to be paying attention) is the more frequent lack of any attempt to exchange cues (both overt and subtle). I am amazed how many people stand at crosswalks looking for all the world like they intend to cross when in reality they are just waiting there.

  71. @b.t.o

    Good lord, the Toronto traffic is ridiculous. It doesn’t take a genius to realize that not building any sort of infrastructure will lead to congestion as the population explodes.

    I drive frequently from London to Peterborough. The trip across the city takes me at least 90 minutes, probably more. No matter what time I go, there is a traffic jam. I’d say about 30% of the other drivers are Canadian. The 407 is too expensive.

    There is always some brown idiot driving a BMW on credit tailgating me, weaving in and out of traffic, and driving like a menace. The dump truck drivers are all sikh and they are even worse.

    I say that how these people drive is an excellent look into the 3rd world mind. No future planning, immediate benefits at all costs even when they don’t actually get ahead.

    I guess the plan is to just continue urban sprawl… you’re liable to hit a traffic jam anywhere from Guelph to Oshawa. Milton is the new Brampton – what a slap in the face to the white flighters who went to Milton in the 1980s!

  72. @Another Canadian

    You don’t realize how … chill (too chill?) … Canadians are until you spend time around the invader groups you mentioned. Great people. Travellers I speak to think the “diverse” Canada is pretty mediocre. But they do say that Canadians are great.

    No need to mess around with the term old stock or legacy, non whites cannot be Canadian. They know it, we know it.

    As a boomer, you’re lucky that you got to live with them most of your life. Gen Z has fewer and fewer all-white areas.

    The invaders don’t seem interested in integrating, which is just fine for me. Hockey rink, gun range, and the hunting areas are completely white.

    Everything is getting worse and nobody wants to point out the problem. It’s laughable. White people are pretty pathetic in general, no wonder we’re getting overrun. It’s a fine mess that you boomers have left us… but I have hope that we will be alright. Young white men have no choice but to be right wing.

  73. @Tim

    It’s normal in Central America to do that. In Dominican, you see guys walking down the highway, riding mopeds down the wrong side of the highway, helmetless, etc. Anything goes.

  74. @Buzz Mohawk

    Haha, yeah, I remember the movie, and you just reminded me to pick up a sealed-beam headlight for an old vehicle that I noticed was out yesterday (and had forgotten). Thanks!

  75. Glt says:

    Thanks for the links. Visibility is also my biggest peeve with modern cars, but I figured it was mostly an internal safety trade-off. Article mentioned a Volvo SCC concept car.

    Sure wish I could buy something like that!

  76. Old Prude says:
    @The Alarmist

    We hired a German sales engineer who was vexed at our four-way stops. He asked about the right of way rules; Who should go first? I explained “Who ever got there first.”

  77. @ben tillman

    The Iphone was released to the public in June 2007. The first Android device followed a year later. Smartphone sales grew fairly steadily from that point.

    The smart phone sales curve seems to correspond nicely to the pedestrian death curve, although phone sales seem to have leveled out beginning in 2017. Assuming many people keep their phones for a while, that would indicate that ownership is still rising.

    Another possible factor: The crash of 2008 also seems to coincide with the beginning of the rise in pedestrian deaths.

  78. @Wilkey

    True, some get the most out of SUVs, but from as many as I see that never get off the road either, most are really wasted money (except for the safety aspect, I suppose). I wrote this post, Sport Utility Drivers – GET OFF the ROAD … a while back, as I got so miffed/pissed at SUV drivers that would get down to 1 mph for a small speed bump that my little Ford could take at 15 mph.

    Ya got a foot of ground clearance and that big suspension – if you won’t even drive over a speed bump at 5 mph, how are you going to drive up that rock face like the guys in the commercials?

    • Replies: @Brutusale
  79. Rapparee says:

    People get away with crazy stunts with 3-ton vehicles that, if done with a firearm, would put you in jail for a year.

    My favorite is seeing the driver’s eyes pointed firmly down at a glowing smartphone screen whilst his car is moving at 40 mph. What could be so wrong with a person’s soul that he’s willing to risk death to himself and others just so he won’t have to spend two minutes alone with his own uninterrupted thoughts?

    I think you’re correct that the key here is pedestrian situational awareness. It amazes me that large percentages of walkers and joggers don’t attempt any sort of eye contact with drivers.

    A personal pet peeve is pedestrians who jaywalk just because they can’t be bothered to walk the extra 15 or 20 feet to the nearest crosswalk. They destroy drivers’ respect for crosswalks in general, which is why half of motorists never slow down when I step into one and try to get their attention. I can understand it with poorly-designed roads that don’t have convenient pedestrian crossings (of which there are too many), but they’ll do it a mere 20-second walk away from a clearly-marked crosswalk with flashing lights.

  80. ricpic says:

    Well that’s great an’ all that you’ve got such a pitch perfect bead on short guys like me but you might try judging an individual based on his individual behavior. Novel concept, I know, but give it a try guy, ‘kay?

  81. ricpic says:
    @Trevor H.

    There is literally nothing aggressive about my Subaru Forester, a small SUV. Quit overgeneralizing.

  82. @Finspapa

    How many died in “Mass shootings” vs car crashes?

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  83. @Mr McKenna

    Yet we had 40,000+ traffic deaths last year, and are headed for record highs.

    We don’t have anywhere near enough cars clogging roads built for a population half our size. The solution of course, is More Immigration!

  84. @John Mansfield

    I experienced the same. And with lower visibility all around, there’s probably a few people who’ve been hit because they weren’t seen.

    The Subaru Outback is the last Car that you can actually see out of. I hope they don’t change it.

  85. So pedestrian fatalities rose 50% from 2009 to 2017; at the same time traffic fatalities rose… about 3%, eyeballing the graph on Wikipedia.

    The first thing the article here blames is “distracted driving” but it looks like they need to add some epicycles if they want to make that theory fit the data.

  86. Bill says:

    Yes, that’s it. Maybe with a tiny assist via little people being less visible from inside an SUV.

  87. theMann says:

    Of course, of those 6227 pedestrian fatalities, at least 6100 of them were poor fools in Texas who thought that just because there was a crosswalk painted on the road, it was ok to cross.

    And despite what Ron Unz thinks, I assure you 6100 of the drivers were Hispanic. And driving on the wrong side of the road.

  88. Johnmark says:

    We get a lot of hit and runs of pedestrians in Sacramento. Some homeless, but also blacks in the night crossing the street. I almost hit an older Asian woman the other night around 7:20 pm when I was about to make a left turn on residential streets. She was wearing dark, non-reflective clothing, and my headlights don’t turn with the wheels like a Tucker’s cyclops auto did. She walked from the left into the street without looking.

    I don’t think she even acknowledged my sudden stopping to let her cross.

    I’ve heard about Asian women drivers, but now Asian women walkers, too?

  89. jim jones says:
    @John Mansfield

    I ride a motorcycle and always make eye contact with the car driver. lately this has become difficult due to the large pillars around the windscreen.

  90. J.Ross says: • Website
    @Steve Sailer


  91. J.Ross says: • Website

    Mass shootings at their most lied about are less common than death from lightning, bees, sharks, or choking; car crashes are much better than in Nader’s day (the high red asphalt mark is about 1970) but still in cardiac territory. Not everyone is a violently disgruntled employee or a government asset working to overturn the Constitution with an artificial moral panic; everyone (in the US) drives.

  92. J.Ross says: • Website

    … who are far more likely to carelessly jaywalk. Our entire current discourse is built around not acknowledging that blacks are a problem.

    • Replies: @eah
  93. Camlost says:

    Here in Atlanta pedestrian deaths are concentrated in the famous Buford Highway corridor – aka Mexico del norte.

    It’s populated by FOB Hispanics who walk everywhere – slowly – portly Mestizo mamacita pushing a stroller in her skin tight pants and tube top, with muffin handles sticking out on both sides – and with 5 and 6 kids in tow. They have no concept of crosswalks at all.

    It’s like a big game of frogger out there. New, super wide and concrete barrier-protected medians are being installed on the whole length of Buford Highway at great cost so that the border jumpers can get a temporarily respite in the middle before braving the 2nd half of the journey across the other lanes.

  94. Correlates with rise of smartphone.

    But correlation is not causation!

  95. @Finspapa

    Make pedestrians wear seat belts and walk slower.

  96. @Buzz Mohawk

    Is the same vehicle that Chevy Chase drove in one of his hilariously funny vacation movies? I never realized before that the station wagon had eight(!) headlamps plus eight turn signal or parking lamps.

  97. @ben tillman

    2009 seems like the right year for smart phones to start making an impact

    Ben, i think you’re nailing 90% of it right there. Smart phones have made pedestrians *way* stupider\less-aware along with distracting drivers even more.

    I think immigration–lower IQs, less conscientiousness, more crowding, gradually breaking natives social cohesion and concern–is a factor as well. (I know i care less about my “fellow Americans” as i have less and less in common with them.) But the big quick turnaround is almost certainly all the idiots walking around staring at their phones.

    • Replies: @YetAnotherAnon
  98. @Clyde

    Armenians are Christians, but not exactly Western European Protestants. Surviving as middle-men and entrepreneurs all over the Middle East obviously selected for different qualities to, say, being a Hanseatic merchant.

    I seem to remember Steve reporting on a Chaldean Christian boy, brought to California from Iraq, who molested his neighbour’s daughter. Bad form.

  99. @AnotherDad

    I know i care less about my “fellow Americans” as i have less and less in common with them.

    Same over here, when I read on BBC news “British man held in country X”, nine times out of ten it’s an Ahmed or Khuram. I don’t wish them ill, but they aren’t my people.

    • Agree: Ibound1
  100. @Buzz Mohawk

    Back when passenger vehicles were still made absent the passenger side view mirror.

    Along with the pillars you mentioned, side view mirrors have become larger, also obscuring forward visibility of cross traffic and pedestrians.

  101. The unspoken issue here is, that you have two groups of travelers: Motorists and pedestrians. When members from each of these two groups come into unexpected contact (accidents,) one group is almost always held to blame as much as the other group is excused. One group travels with impunity, the other travels with agency.

    Now, one might notice the parallels between this scenario and interactions between other types of groups. and every time, the group held to a lesser standard is typically the group that learns to behave without fear of any (legal, at least) consequence.

  102. Servus says:

    Part of the blame is on the popular “stroad” design in rapidly growing areas like the west side of Austin which is currently absorbing bazillions of young California families as they flee lack of affordable family formation in California — and stroads are the favored road design.

    Stroads are worst of both worlds between Streets (designed for pedestrian safety and scale) and Roads (designed to move people efficiently and quickly between places). I’m certainly no New Urbanist and I really do love my suburban living – but I have to admit that stroads really are more dangerous and poorly designed.

  103. Another factor: More and more people, especially Millenials in urban areas, are eschewing auto ownership in favor of shoe leather (or, if too stoned or drunk to walk, Uber).

  104. @Semperluctor

    Chicken dinner.

    In addition to a greater chance of causing one to be crushed under the vehicle, the higher point of impact also means more crushed ribs and vital organs (vs. broken legs).

  105. @ricpic

    Speaking of overgeneralizing, why is the Subaru known as the “Honda for Lesbians”, Ricpic? I just thought as an owner, you might have some insight. What kind of incentives do the dealers give out?

    • Replies: @Jim Don Bob
    , @ricpic
  106. Anon[257] • Disclaimer says:

    Major reason families need big cars are the mandatory car seat and seat belt laws.

    There are only so many seat belts in a car. But everyone must be belted in. Parents are always driving other children around. So parents need room for at least 6 seat belts. Their own 2 or 3 and 3 or 4 other children as well as 2 adults in the front seats. Same with car seats, mandatory up to 60 pounds which is an average 7 to 9 year old child. Some states contemplate mandating car seats up to an 80 pd child. Think about those very slim short Asian girls. They might be in car seats till 12 or 13.

    It’s been 50 years since 4 unseatbelted kids could squeeze together on the back seat.

    My cars small. But has 3 seat belts on the back seat. It’s fine forskinny children but uncomfortable for 3 adults 3 chubby children and kids over 13.
    There’s also the homework and s book project burden and the over sized school textbooks and the pounds of books binders and other school c..p the kids are required to drag home every day in those monster back packs.

    Those books and bs k packs are a reason so many parents pick up the kids. It’s not good for growing bones for a 60 pd child to carry a 20 pound back pack twice a day

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
    , @J.Ross
  107. @Anon

    Dad carries less weight on a business trip because he has a rolling suitcase than his 9 year old daughter to her school with a backpack.

  108. Parker TV says: • Website

    There must be some accumulation of data for +6,000 pedestrian deaths such as: Sex, Age, Physical Status, Attire, Time, Weather, Scene (Sidewalk, Intersection, Crossing, Street, Road, Highway etc), Vehicle, Driver, DWI, Distractions, etc, etc, etc… at least one would hope there is data rather than making suppositions.

  109. J.Ross says: • Website

    I forget if it was here or 4chan but somebody was observing a generational memory that in the school period of your first more serious textbooks, say from late elementary through high, you got these enormous tomes and only actually used about sixty pages. An injury and an inquiry is coming in the near future, in which, just like with high school football or cheerleading, it will be discovered that nobody has been thinking about how much weight we ask kids to carry around for no good reason.

    • Replies: @Steve Sailer
  110. Parker TV says: • Website

    There must be some accumulation of data for +6,000 pedestrian deaths such as: Sex, Age, Physical Status, Attire, Time, Weather, Scene (Sidewalk, Intersection, Crossing, Street, Road, Highway etc), Vehicle, Driver, DWI, Distractions, etc, etc, etc… at least one would hope rather than making suppositions.

  111. @J.Ross

    Textbooks are chosen via a lengthy process focusing on individual subjects. There isn’t much incentive for the History Teachers to choose a smaller textbook in return for Science Teachers also getting a smaller textbook.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
    , @J.Ross
  112. Anonymous[427] • Disclaimer says:
    @Steve Sailer

    Most textbooks are garbage, they were when I was in school and still are.
    A school using only public domain books and military rate training manuals would be far better than one equipped with the ones in use today.

    • Replies: @J.Ross
  113. J.Ross says: • Website
    @Steve Sailer

    One word: digital.
    If there’s an injury that can be tied to weight they’ll find a way, especially since nobody uses the wjole book.

  114. J.Ross says: • Website

    I tried to make this argument years ago and it went sideways, but: what if our purpose was really to cut out as much expense as possible from education? Not as a peacetime political speech goal but as part of a war or emergency. All the great books and almost all the texts necessary to explore them and every language is available in one form or another, free online with a little looking. Lectures from Harvard and MIT are on YouTube. You hit a wall with STEM because there’s no way around laboratories and equipment, but if we really had to, we could drop almost the entire physical textbook phenomenon without condemning our kids to ignorance.
    All of this dances around the fact that if a kid doesn’t do the work, no number of bound pages can save him.

  115. @Finspapa

    We need car control. Now!

    SUV control, definitely.

  116. eah says:

    … who are far more likely to carelessly jaywalk.

    Perhaps; I honestly don’t know — interestingly, Forbes has now removed the original article (try finding it yourself) — it attributed the result to an anomaly of the SW/vision system — but I think the sample size was probably rather small as well.

  117. Brutusale says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    Where I live SUVs are usually driven by suburban hausfraus. It’s the PIPs (Pussies In Pickups), tiny guys who’ve never seen a job site, creeping over speedbumps and potholes with 3 feet of clearance, that crack me up.

    I guess if I paid $50K for a metallic penis extension, I’d treat it with kid gloves, too!

  118. Brutusale says:

    Lezbaru, the state car of Vermont!

    That said, a Subaru is a great car for Vermont winters.

  119. Stilicho says:

    Hard proof that Obamaphones kill black people.

  120. ricpic says:
    @Achmed E. Newman

    Pure supposition on my part but one thing about Subarus is that they have great sight lines, no blind spots, and we all know lesbians are major paranoiacs, on the lookout for “the enemy,” so…………..

  121. Coming from the First State (Delaware – Dec. 7 1787), the 2nd smallest State (after wussy Rhode Island), and in 2015 the deadliest State to Pedestrians per population, I have personally witnessed and narrowly avoided the “moving targets” myself.

    Going out for a later dinner can turn into a “did you see me just miss him” response to the wife. A combination of dark clothes, cell phone zombie walking, and a disdain for vehicular avoidance protocols seems to provide fodder for the Grim Reaper and his assistant, Long Hospital Stay.

    In 2017 Delaware had a David Carradine-like “Death Race” with 216 hits, killing 34. It seems human beings are in a competition for car caused deer hits!

    Reasons why? Uh, people. Stupid people. A quick breakdown shows some of the reasons.

    One of the main roads involves Rt. 13, basically built by the duPonts to connect their HQ in Wilmington to their nylon factories in lower, slower Delaware. Never designed for infrastructure, this major conduit quickly became a source for business locations based on the vehicle, not walking. But people do walk. And get hit. High speed always overcomes response time.

    Next is Rt. 40 which used to be a way to Baltimore and D.C. before the introduction of Interstate 95 plowing thru 20+ miles of the First State. A sleepy, hilly road that has been surpassed, once again this is vehicularly positive, pedestrian weak.

    Interesting side note about Rt. 40 area. It used to be known as white biker gang / meth land but has been cleansed and turned into a vibrant middle class African American community. The massive Christiana Hospital, associated medical clinics and contorted entrance Mall (sales tax free) have been a boon to blacks, many escaping Philadelphia (filthadelphia) to the more open and opportunity rich Delaware.

    Last is Rt. 2 which connects the old Chemical (and Incorporation) Capital of Wilmington to Newark (home of U of D.) The main reason this target rich environment exists is the recent insertion of Section 8 housing, bringing previous urbanites and “low rural traffic” foreigners into a major suburban thoroughfare. I actually saw a mobile lighted traffic sign posted warning of crossing people. I guess it was too accurate and too politically incorrect and soon disappeared.

    The small state has no subway, poor bus service, and no way to correct the disdain shown by walkers who cross where they want, when they want. Sometimes unknowingly, sometimes brazenly.

    Some attempts have been made with the introduction of sidewalks in a state never designed for them on major highways. This is an added strain on a state already losing tax dollar revenue with the loss of two car manufacturing plants (GM and Chrysler) and the dissolving of the major employer, the DuPont company. It seems Senator / VP Biden, made famous for riding public supported Amtrak train weekly to D.C. never had a concern of the citizens working and walking in his home State.

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