Until recently, the total number of auto accident fatalities in the United States had been trending downwards. While this has started to turn around over the past few years and more people are dying in all different types of car accidents, there has been one particular type of collision that has increased dramatically: pedestrian accident crashes that result in the death of the pedestrian.
There are many possible reasons why there may be more pedestrians dying in motor vehicle collisions. However, NBC reported recently on a troubling report from Insurance Institute for Highway Safety that suggests one big trend is playing an outsized role in causing more pedestrians to be killed in car accidents: the rise in SUVs.
If you or someone you love is killed in a pedestrian collision, an Atlanta car accident lawyer can help you to determine if you have a legal right to hold the driver of the car that caused the crash accountable for damages. You should contact an Atlanta pedestrian accident attorney for help as soon as possible so you can begin putting together a claim and fighting for the compensation that you deserve.
Are SUV’s Increasing the Number of Pedestrian Accident Fatalities?
According to NBC News, SUVs and light trucks have become the most popular types of vehicles on the roads in the United States. Light trucks of all types account for around 2/3 of new vehicles purchased, while SUVs alone are chosen by more than half of all new-car buyers in the United States.
The problem is, as SUVs have grown in popularity, the number of fatal collisions between sports utility vehicles and pedestrians has risen dramatically. Over the course of the past decade alone, there has been an 81 percent rise in the number of pedestrians killed by SUVs.
While it is easy to assume that this is just because there happen to be so many SUVs out there, the sad fact is that this is not the only explanation. When an SUV and a pedestrian become involved in an accident, the walker is much more likely to be killed by the collision than if a pedestrian was hit by some other type of vehicle such as a standard passenger car or even a mini-van.
There are two big reasons why SUVs are so dangerous to pedestrians. The first is that SUVs have a higher center of gravity than many other vehicles. The second is that SUVs tend to have fronts on the cars that are more vertical, compared with other types of vehicles that have a more rounded nose.
Because of the high center of gravity and the vertical design, pedestrians cannot role off of the impact when they are hit by an SUV as they can when they are hit by many other kinds of motor vehicles. They are far more likely to suffer fatal injuries because they absorb more of the impact from the accident due to this design issue.
Drivers of SUVs, and all vehicles, need to do their part to try to keep pedestrians safe by driving responsibly. If a motorist fails to operate his or her vehicle in a safe and responsible manner, victims should consult with an attorney about pursuing a claim for compensation for any accidents that result from driver negligence.
The Atlanta pedestrian accident lawyers at Sammons & Carpenter, P.C. can represent victims after a collision. Call today at (404) 814-8949 or contact us online to schedule your free consultation.