With the number of deadly pedestrian-related incidents rising on Virginia’s roadways, the state government is reminding both drivers and those walking that they have a role to play in reducing the number of accidents.
“We need everyone’s help,” Virginia Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran said in an Oct. 30 statement from the Governor’s Leadership Team on Highway Safety.
Last year, 123 pedestrians were killed on Virginia’s roadways, the highest number in a decade. “Tragically, we are on pace for an equally high number of deaths again this year,” said Virginia Secretary of Transportation Shannon Valentine.
The figures are more stark when looking at deaths among those age 51 and older. A total of 50 such pedestrians were killed between Jan. 1 and Oct. 1, an increase of 92 percent from a year before. The increase was nearly 130 percent in the over-70 age category.
State officials noted that one-quarter of pedestrian fatalities on Virginia roadways occur in November and December, when daylight hours grow increasingly shorter.