(The Hill) – Pedestrian deaths hit a four-decade high in 2021, averaging out at 20 deaths in the U.S. every day, a new report has found.
An estimated 7,485 people were killed while on foot last year, compared to 6,711 in 2020, according to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA).
Seven states reported an increase of more than 30 percent in the number of people on foot struck and killed in motor vehicle crashes.
“This is heartbreaking and unacceptable. The pandemic has caused so much death and damage, it’s frustrating to see even more lives needlessly taken due to dangerous driving,” said GHSA Executive Director Jonathan Adkins.
“We must address the root causes of the pedestrian safety crisis – speeding and other dangerous driving behaviors, inadequate infrastructure, and roads designed for vehicle speed instead of safety – to reverse this trend and ensure people can walk safely,” he added.
Here are the states that recorded the highest numbers of pedestrian deaths last year:
California saw the most pedestrian deaths, with 958 deaths recorded. The figure marks a 6 percent decrease from 2020, when the state reported 1,026 pedestrian deaths, however, giving it the largest decrease in the number of deaths on foot in a year’s time.
The Sunshine State saw a 25 percent increase in deaths on foot in a year at 899 deaths, making it the state with the largest jump in the number of pedestrian deaths.
Texas increased from 714 pedestrian deaths in 2020 to 825 in 2021, a 15 percent increase.
Georgia reported 348 pedestrian deaths, a 23 percent increase over a year span.
The Empire State saw 296 deaths of people on foot, up from 241 the year prior.