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Pedestrian Deaths Are at an All-Time High

Analysis by Dr. Joseph Mercola Fact Checked

pedestrian deaths

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  • The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) estimated over 6,200 people died in traffic accidents in 2018, the highest number recorded in nearly 30 years; the majority were people walking on local streets
  • GHSA listed contributing factors, including distracted pedestrians and drivers from smartphone use, climbing populations and increasing sales of light trucks and SUVs, which have a higher potential for pedestrian fatalities
  • Of the 95 percent of Americans with a cellphone, 77 percent are smartphones; dependence or addiction affected over 420 million people worldwide in 2014. Conditions associated with triggering internet addiction include anxiety, depression, social isolation, stress and other addictions
  • Incorporating walking into your daily routine improves your overall fitness and increases your longevity; you may reduce your risk of injury by sticking to sidewalks, walking facing traffic, wearing reflective clothing and putting away all digital devices

As little as 150 minutes of walking each week may reduce your risk of all-cause mortality, reduce your insulin resistance and contribute to a fitness routine, helping improve your balance, metabolism and mood. However, while walking is a simple and easy way to integrate fitness into your daily routine, it’s important to pay attention to your surroundings while walking.

For instance, research has demonstrated the number of people dying early from exposure to air pollution, including car exhaust, is more than the number caused by smoking each year. Rising rates of pollution contribute to lower life expectancy, attention deficit disorder, obesity and cardiovascular disease. Thus, it is likely not a good idea to be walking outdoors in highly polluted areas.

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