An Investigation of the Nation's Increasing Number of Pedestrian Fatalities

PBS New Hour takes a deep dive into the climbing number of pedestrian deaths in the United States—now at their highest level in almost three decades.

1 minute read

June 20, 2019, 5:00 AM PDT

By James Brasuell @CasualBrasuell

Traffic Safety Advocates

New Yorkers rally for slower speed limits outside Prospect Park. / Dmitry Gudkov

Arren Kimbel-Sannit and a team of student reporters from the Howard Center for Investigative Journalism at Arizona State University report on the growing number of pedestrian fatalities around the nation, with the assumption that a variety of factors is contributing to the growing number of tragedies on the nation's roads: "wider roads, sprawling cities, heavier traffic in residential areas due to navigation apps and increasing distractions from digital devices."

The scene is set by an intersection in Los Angeles, where a driver struck and killed 17-year-old Christian Vega in February. Neighborhood advocates have called for safety improvements for years, according to Kimbel-Sannit, but the city acted too late to prevent Vega's death.

Though the problem is far from isolated to Los Angeles. "Across the country, pedestrian deaths are on the rise, jumping from more than 4,000 in 2009 to nearly 6,000 in 2017," according to Kimbel-Sannit.

The report is available in the television broadcast and in a full transcript published below the video at the link below.

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