Jaywalking Not As Big A Safety Issue As Assumed

Over the past 15 years, more than 76,000 pedestrians have been killed in the U.S. Some say preventing a significant portion of these deaths is as simple as enforcing jaywalking laws. Not so, argues Tom Vanderbilt, author of Traffic.

"Certainly, there are egregious jaywalkers who defy logic and physics in their wayward perambulations. (Many of these are drunk people; as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration notes, "about 25 percent of fatally injured pedestrians have a BAC greater than .20"). And, conversely, there are also careful jaywalkers, like myself, who frankly find the notion of waiting for a signal when no cars are in sight to be faintly ridiculous and anti-urban.

But the facts simply do not support the idea that jaywalking is the greatest danger pedestrians face, and that drivers should be let off the hook."

Vanderbilt cites a report that finds only 20 percent of fatalities occurred where a pedestrian was crossing outside an easily available crosswalk.

Full Story: In Defense of Jaywalking

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