According to a recent study, elderly pedestrians may be more at risk than elderly drivers. According to the study, conducted at the University of Plymouth, pedestrians over the age of 70 were five times more likely to suffer fatal injuries when they headed out to walk, when compared with pedestrians between the ages of 21 to 29. Jonathan Rolison, who led the study, said that making the roads safer for all pedestrians means not only creating safer roads for elderly drivers but also safer streets for elderly pedestrians.
The research study reviewed U.K. police data for fatal traffic accidents that took place from 1989 to 2009. According to researchers, the results suggested that the risk of fatal injuries was similar for younger drivers and older drivers. For drivers under the age of 29, 13 in 100 million drives resulted in a fatality. For drivers over 70, the rate was 14 in 100 million driving trips. It was when researchers looked fatality rates among pedestrians that they saw a significant difference based on age. For elderly pedestrians, 23 in 100 million walking trips were fatal, a rate that was five times higher than the rate of pedestrian fatalities for younger walkers.
While a great deal has been written about the risk of Miami car accidents for elderly drivers, this latest research suggests that Miami pedestrian accidents may be an even greater concern. Many experts believe that the elderly are more at risk for Miami traffic accidents due to such conditions as dementia, eye problems, and other health conditions which can affect an elderly person’s ability to drive safely. However, some of the same health conditions that the elderly have a disproportionately high risk for also make the elderly vulnerable to pedestrian accidents. Moreover, since many elderly residents of Miami decide to take walks in order to maintain their health and in order to get around, Miami pedestrian accidents can be a significant issue – even when an elderly driver decides to give up their keys and stop driving.
It is everyone’s responsibility to make the streets of Miami as safe as possible, and that does mean making streets safer for pedestrians. Of course, there many things that elderly pedestrians and their families can do in order to keep elderly pedestrians safer. For example, elderly pedestrians can wear visible clothing and sturdy shoes in order to prevent pedestrian accidents. They can also take good care of their health in order to ensure that Miami slip and fall accidents are less of a risk. However, it is also up to legislators and the city to ensure that sidewalks and public spaces are safe for all pedestrians.