Orlando is the deadliest city for pedestrians in the entire United States, with around 25-30 collisions involving pedestrians every single day. These horrifying statistics have fortunately spurred the city to try and reduce the number of pedestrian accidents. Just what is Orlando planning to do to make its streets safer for pedestrians? Curbed has the answer.
Raising Crosswalks & Installing Flashing Lights
Orlando, like most Florida cities, was not designed with pedestrians in mind. Instead, the focus was always on providing as much room as possible for motorists to drive as fast as they could. Many cities lack even dedicated crosswalks for pedestrians, which often incentivizes jaywalking and increases the chances of a pedestrian accident.
Making pedestrian safety a priority means making pedestrians visible. To this end, Orlando and surrounding areas have installed and flashing lights so that motorists will know when to slow down. Raised crosswalks also physically separate pedestrians from motor vehicles, allowing them to cross with greater safety.
One way to slow traffic is to limit the number of lanes that cars can use, something called a “road diet.” Orlando’s city transportation chief has already implemented temporary road diets in certain high-risk corridors in the city to improve safety and the ability of cyclists to move around. He claims that he will expand the process to different areas in Orlando.
Pedestrian safety costs money and other measures will require funds to foot the bill. Orange County has proposed increasing its sales tax to generate an additional $600 million a year. Some of that money can be used to improve pedestrian safety by redesigning dangerous roads.
By lowering the speed limit from 40 to 25, Orlando hopes to reduce the number of pedestrian accidents. When cars travel at slower speeds, both drivers and pedestrians have more time to take defensive actions.
Changing Development Guidelines
Another way Orlando is improving pedestrian safety is including it from the very start with new developments. The city’s transportation chief is set to rewrite some guidelines so that the layout of new communities encourages pedestrian safety.
Can Miami Follow Orlando’s Lead?
Our city sees its fair share of pedestrian accidents as well. We hope Miami takes to heart the lessons learned in Orlando and applies the best of them to our own city.
If you were injured in a collision, please contact Dolan Dobrinsky Rosenblum Bluestein today. We offer a free consultation to any pedestrian injured in a crash with a motor vehicle. You can call 305-371-2692 for more information.