Pedestrian Accidents Involving Drunk Drivers in North Carolina: A Growing Concern

The number of pedestrian accidents caused by drunk drivers in North Carolina is on the rise. Despite efforts to reduce impairment-related crashes, these types of accidents continue to be a serious problem in the state. In this article, we will examine the statistics of pedestrian accidents in North Carolina and the role that drunk driving plays in these incidents. We will also explore preventative measures to reduce these accidents as well as what to do if you are a victim of a drunk driving pedestrian accident.

The Alarming Statistics of Pedestrian Accidents in North Carolina

In 2018, there were 3,601 pedestrians involved in accidents in North Carolina. Out of these, 236 pedestrians died, which is an increase from 2017. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) indicates that pedestrian fatalities in North Carolina outpace the national average.

Recent Trends in Pedestrian Accidents

Recent data shows that pedestrian accidents are on the rise in North Carolina. From 2017 to 2018, the number of pedestrian accidents increased by 4%. Additionally, the number of pedestrians killed in accidents involving either a vehicle or bicycle increased by 19% from 2017 to 2018.

One of the contributing factors to the rise in pedestrian accidents is distracted driving. With the widespread use of smartphones and other electronic devices, drivers are more likely to be distracted while behind the wheel. This can lead to a failure to notice pedestrians crossing the street or walking along the road, resulting in accidents.

Comparing North Carolina to National Averages

The NHTSA reported pedestrian fatalities for 2018 at 6,283 nationwide. The pedestrian fatality rate in North Carolina is higher than the national average per capita. This alarming statistic emphasizes the importance placed on understanding the causes and implementing effective measures aimed at reducing the number of pedestrian accidents in North Carolina.

One measure that has been implemented in some areas is the creation of more pedestrian-friendly infrastructure. This includes the addition of crosswalks, pedestrian bridges, and sidewalks. By providing safe and accessible areas for pedestrians to walk, the number of accidents can be reduced.

The Impact on Vulnerable Populations

Pedestrian accidents often have a more significant impact on vulnerable populations such as children, the elderly, and people with disabilities. Across the country, pedestrian fatalities increased by 53% from 2009 to 2018 for individuals aged 50 and over. There was also an increase in pedestrian fatalities of children aged 14 and under. Pedestrian accidents not only affect individuals physically but can cause long-term emotional trauma as well.

It is essential to consider the unique needs of vulnerable populations when implementing measures to reduce pedestrian accidents. This includes providing safe and accessible routes for individuals with disabilities and ensuring that crosswalks are clearly marked and visible to all pedestrians.

In conclusion, the statistics surrounding pedestrian accidents in North Carolina are alarming. It is crucial to understand the causes of these accidents and implement effective measures to reduce their occurrence. By creating more pedestrian-friendly infrastructure and considering the needs of vulnerable populations, we can work towards a safer and more accessible North Carolina for all.

The Role of Drunk Driving in Pedestrian Accidents

Pedestrian Accidents Involving Drunk Drivers in North Carolina: A Growing Concern

Drunk driving continues to be a significant contributor to pedestrian accidents in North Carolina. In alcohol-impaired driving accidents that resulted in pedestrian fatalities, the NHTSA data shows that 62% of drivers had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of .08 or higher.

How Alcohol Impairs Driving Abilities

Alcohol impairs a driver’s ability to operate a vehicle safely. Even one alcoholic drink can reduce reaction time and impair cognitive abilities needed to operate a vehicle. Alcohol can also affect a driver’s ability to perceive the distance and location of surrounding pedestrians.

Legal Consequences for Drunk Drivers

Drunk drivers can face severe legal consequences for causing a pedestrian accident. Individuals convicted of driving under the influence (DUI) may face fines, jail time, revocation of their driver’s license, increased insurance rates, and other penalties.

The Emotional Toll on Victims and Families

Victims and families of individuals involved in pedestrian accidents often face emotional trauma that can last long after the accident. The physical and psychological injuries sustained in these accidents can lead to significant medical expenses and life-long consequences.

Preventative Measures to Reduce Pedestrian Accidents

North Carolina has seen an increase in pedestrian accidents in recent years, with many of these accidents resulting in serious injuries or fatalities. It is essential to take preventative measures to reduce these accidents and make the roads safer for everyone.

Public Awareness Campaigns

One of the most effective ways to reduce pedestrian accidents is through public awareness campaigns. These campaigns can help educate drivers and pedestrians on ways to stay safe while on the roads. For example, drivers can be reminded to look out for pedestrians, especially when turning or entering a crosswalk. Pedestrians can be reminded to use crosswalks and to avoid distractions, such as texting or listening to music, while crossing the street.

Public awareness campaigns can also inform the public of the dangers of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Impaired driving is a leading cause of pedestrian accidents, and it is essential to remind drivers of the severe consequences of driving while impaired.

Law Enforcement Efforts

In addition to public awareness campaigns, increased law enforcement efforts can also help reduce the number of pedestrian accidents. Police checkpoints and the use of sobriety tests can help deter drivers from driving while under the influence. Law enforcement can also crack down on other dangerous driving behaviors, such as speeding or distracted driving.

Furthermore, law enforcement can work to improve pedestrian safety by enforcing traffic laws related to pedestrian crossings and crosswalks. Drivers who fail to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks or who block crosswalks can be ticketed, which can help improve pedestrian safety.

Infrastructure Improvements for Pedestrian Safety

Improvements to the infrastructure can also help reduce pedestrian accidents. Pedestrian crosswalks, crossings with signals, sidewalk improvements, and street lighting can all improve pedestrian safety. For example, adding more crosswalks and signals can make it easier for pedestrians to cross the street safely. Improving sidewalks and adding lighting can also make it safer for pedestrians to walk, especially at night.

Another infrastructure improvement that can improve pedestrian safety is the use of traffic calming measures, such as speed humps or roundabouts. These measures can help slow down traffic and make it safer for pedestrians to cross the street.

In conclusion, there are several preventative measures that can be implemented to reduce pedestrian accidents in North Carolina. By increasing public awareness, improving law enforcement efforts, and making infrastructure improvements, we can make the roads safer for everyone.

What to Do If You’re a Victim of a Drunk Driving Pedestrian Accident

Pedestrian Accidents Involving Drunk Drivers in North Carolina: A Growing Concern

If you are a victim of a drunk driving pedestrian accident, it is essential to take steps to ensure your safety and protect your legal rights. Being involved in a pedestrian accident can be a traumatic experience, and it’s important to know what to do in the aftermath.

Seeking Medical Attention

Seeking medical attention should be your top priority if you are involved in a pedestrian accident. Even if you don’t feel hurt initially, many injuries may not show up until days or even weeks later. It’s important to get checked out by a medical professional to make sure that you don’t have any hidden injuries.

Some common injuries that can result from a pedestrian accident include broken bones, head trauma, and internal injuries. These injuries can be severe, and it’s crucial to get medical attention as soon as possible to prevent further complications.

Reporting the Accident to the Police

Reporting the accident to the police is crucial for documenting the event and creating a record of the incident. When you report the accident, the police will come to the scene and take statements from everyone involved. They will also gather evidence and create a report of the accident.

This report can be helpful if you decide to pursue legal action against the driver who hit you. It can also be useful when dealing with insurance companies and seeking compensation for your injuries and other damages.

Working with a Personal Injury Attorney

An experienced personal injury attorney can help you navigate the legal process of filing a claim and recovering damages. Attorneys can also help victims and their families receive compensation for expenses related to the accident.

When you work with a personal injury attorney, they will review your case and help you determine the best course of action. They can negotiate with insurance companies on your behalf and represent you in court if necessary.

It’s important to choose an attorney with experience in pedestrian accident cases. They will have the knowledge and expertise needed to help you get the compensation you deserve.

Overall, being involved in a pedestrian accident can be a challenging and overwhelming experience. However, by taking the right steps, you can protect your legal rights and get the help you need to recover from your injuries.


Pedestrian accidents involving drunk drivers continue to be a growing concern in North Carolina. While there are measures in place to reduce these types of accidents, including public awareness campaigns, law enforcement efforts, and infrastructure improvements, it is essential to remain vigilant on the roads. If you are a victim of a drunk driving pedestrian accident, seeking medical attention, reporting the accident to the police, and working with an experienced personal injury attorney can help protect your legal rights and receive appropriate compensation for your injuries.

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