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4 common reasons for serious vehicle-pedestrian collisions

Parents visiting Penn State for a weekend of football and get-togethers with their children usually spend a good deal of time walking on and near campus.

Visitors must be especially mindful of walking in unfamiliar areas. Here are four common reasons for serious accidents that occur between motor vehicles and pedestrians.

Intersection accidents

Signaled crosswalks greatly reduce the incidents of vehicle-pedestrian collisions but crosswalks are not always available. For example, drivers who are looking for a place to park will focus on that effort and may not see people walking

Quiet cars

Because battery-operated and hybrid vehicles are very quiet, the NHTSA finds that they are 40 percent more likely to collide with pedestrians who do not hear them coming.

Left-hand turns

When crossing the street, even in a marked crosswalk, pedestrians are more often struck by  cars turning left than by cars turning right. Walkers are looking straight ahead while drivers are looking elsewhere as they negotiate the intersection.

Dark clothing

Most pedestrian fatalities take place in non-intersection areas and at night. Pedestrians add to the danger if they wear dark clothing after the sun goes down.

High numbers

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration tells us that pedestrians represent as much as 13% of all vehicle-related deaths annually. Many pedestrian injuries are severe and require a lifetime of care. Visitors to the Penn State area should exercise caution while walking, but if driver negligence results in an injury, the pedestrian has the right to expect full and fair compensation to cover current and future medical expenses and more.