Drivers and pedestrians need to make safety a priority in Las Vegas

Fatal accidents are on the rise in NV; drivers and pedestrian's both need to play a part to stay safe.

School has started again and so has the need for motorists to drive with awareness of pedestrians. Las Vegas is considered one of most dangerous cities for pedestrians; ranking 13th in the nation for fatal accidents in 2012, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Pedestrians seem to be losing their lives at a growing rate year over year.

Over the past six years, the Nevada police force has been focusing on pedestrian safety and has been ticketing drivers and pedestrians who fail to follow the rules of the road, like yielding to crosswalks or failing to use them when crossing an intersection. The Henderson police department conducted the most recent target on pedestrian safety in the end of August. During the weeklong operation, officers issued citations to 14 pedestrians and 45 motorists, according to CBS Las Vegas. The results are not surprising and show us how important it is for motorists and those on foot to obey traffic rules and use safety measures.

Keeping safe by car or foot

Las Vegas is a busy city with lots of foot and car traffic; we know it can be dangerous to walk around the city. However, people are still not employing the precautionary measures needed to stop the growing trend of accidents. To help do so, the Nevada Department of Transportation (NDOT) and the NHTSA recommend certain safety measures for both drivers and pedestrians to help reduce accidents.

Drivers need to remain observant and aware of pedestrians when behind the wheel. This includes obeying traffic rules, particularly speed limits and taking extra care at intersections and crosswalks.

Likewise, it is important for pedestrian's to follow the rules of the road. This includes using crosswalks and avoiding jaywalking. It is also crucial for someone on foot to be vigilant in looking for oncoming traffic. Extra precautions include:

  • Make eye contact with motorists before crossing the street
  • Use sidewalks and walking paths or keep to the left and face ongoing traffic
  • Wear bright clothes or reflective safety gear, especially at dusk, dawn or in the evening
  • Avoid busy intersections

Pedestrians must always be aware of their surroundings and on the offensive. Part of being alert also means to put down the phone, the book and save the earbuds for later. Any distractions may lead to a serious accident for pedestrians and drivers alike.

Be extra vigilant around schools

As we are into the new school year, extra measures must be taken for children and motorists around schools as well. Schools are a lively harried place, especially when families are busy and trying to quickly drop off and pick up kids from school.

Parents can increase safety by remembering a few tips, such as following the school's drop-off and pick-up procedures, unloading kids in front of the school (not across the street) and avoiding blocking visibility for other cars by double-parking. Drivers should also take extra care in school zones. Some safety recommendations include:

  • Do not pass a stopped school bus or vehicle stopped for pedestrians
  • Yield to persons in crosswalks and at intersections and stop for crossing guards
  • Do not block crosswalks when waiting to make a turn or at a stop light
  • Use extreme caution in school or play zones

Extra care can prevent a fatal accident; this includes not engaging in distracting activities while driving. Anything that takes a driver's eyes off the road, even for a second, can have disastrous results.

It the event that an accident does occur, contact an attorney at Kunin & Carmen. Our attorneys are experienced in all types of motor vehicle and pedestrian related accidents. We can answer your questions, explain all of your options and help you look out for your rights throughout the entire claim process.