Non-Roadway Traffic Deaths On the Rise

A growing number of traffic deaths occur in driveways, parking lots, and other non-roadway spaces.

1 minute read

April 22, 2024, 5:00 AM PDT

By Diana Ionescu @aworkoffiction

High view of woman walking in parking lot with red and white cars visible at left.

BNMK0819 / Adobe Stock

In a piece for Streetsblog USA, Kea Wilson calls attention to the roadway-adjacent spaces “outside of the traditional transportation space” where a “shocking” number — 3,990 in 2021 — of traffic deaths occur. According to Wilson, these cases often involve people “struck by drivers on private property, like parking lots, driveways, drive-thrus, and private roads.”

Vision Zero advocates say governments and transportation departments should keep this in mind when planning road safety policies to include things that go beyond public roadways. Amber Rollins, director of advocacy group Kids and Car Safety also wants transportation officials to pay closer attention to pedestrian safety in tracking crashes and the design of parking lots and driveways. “Rollins says the value of human lives can easily be erased by a crash reporting system not designed with non-roadway contexts in mind, even as thousands of people die in those spaces every year.”

“In addition to fighting for better vehicle safety technology, Rollins wishes other advocates would acknowledge the role of vehicle bloat — and its attendant phenomenon, blind-spot bloat — specifically in non-traffic crashes, and how the swelling size of the average SUV is affecting crash severity even when drivers are moving at a crawl.”

Thursday, April 18, 2024 in Streetsblog USA

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