In an effort to reduce traffic collisions and pedestrian/cyclist deaths, Twin Cities lawmakers are working to lower the city speed limits from the 30 mph standard. The National Transportation Safety Board notes that ‘speeding’ factors into 31% of fatal traffic collisions nationwide. Though the speed limit change will most likely not affect state and county roads, which are managed by the state, the plan highlights needed measures for reducing traffic accidents.
Planning for safer streets
The plan, which follows Minneapolis’s Vision Zero initiative, hopes to reduce traffic deaths in the cities. According to the 2013 study by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, a pedestrian has a 73% chance of dying from a vehicle collision over 40 mph while a 13% chance of dying from a vehicle going 20 mph. The news regarding the speed limit change comes at the same time that a pedestrian was killed in a traffic accident in Brainerd, MN. With that tragedy in mind, here are four possible safety precautions for pedestrians:
- Wear brightly colored or reflectively clothing at night.
- On areas where there are no sidewalks, walk towards traffic to keep an eye on distracted drivers.
- Abide by traffic signals at crosswalks and intersection.
- Make eye contact with those drivers attempting to turn during a walk signal to ensure they see you.
Designing a safer future
Future street design changes could include wider lanes and different timing for stoplights. Despite changes, the incidence of distracted driving continues to cause traffic accidents throughout Minnesota. If you or someone you love was seriously injured in a traffic accident, you need an attorney with experience in personal injury and motor vehicle accidents.