Albuquerque, New Mexico, has seen a record-high number of pedestrian deaths in 2021, with 324 people struck and 49 fatalities, 20 of which were in hit-and-runs that remain unsolved. This increase marks a significant increase from the previous record of 88 deaths in 1995, and it has placed New Mexico at the top of the nation for pedestrian fatalities for the fifth year in a row.
The cause of the increase in pedestrian deaths is unknown, but some speculate that it is due to drivers taking advantage of the pandemic shutdown to drive recklessly, while others point to Albuquerque’s history of designing its roads for speed. The police department is having difficulty keeping up with the number of cases, leaving victims’ families without closure.
The story of Randy and Linda Casper illustrates the tragedy of this epidemic. Their daughter, Kristin, was killed in a hit and run accident in Albuquerque in June 2021, and eight months later, the family is still waiting for answers.
This epidemic of pedestrian deaths is a nationwide problem, with the first nine months of 2021 seeing the highest percentage increase in the history of the Fatality Analysis Reporting System. New Mexico had an almost 20% increase over that same time period, which is the seventh highest in the country.
The state of New Mexico is taking steps to address the issue. The city of Albuquerque has established a Vision Zero program, with the goal of eliminating traffic-related deaths and injuries by the year 2036. This includes the installation of pedestrian-friendly infrastructure such as crosswalks, street lighting, and signage.
In addition, the state is investing in public outreach and education and enforcing speeding and other traffic laws more strictly. The goal is to create a culture of shared responsibility on the roads, where drivers and pedestrians alike follow the rules of the road and look out for each other.
Despite these efforts, the number of pedestrian deaths in New Mexico continues to rise. It is a tragedy that can be prevented by everyone doing their part to drive safely and look out for pedestrians. Until then, the families of victims like Kristin Casper will continue to wait for answers.
Pedestrian accidents are a serious problem; when they occur, victims have the right to seek compensation for their injuries. A pedestrian accident lawyer can help victims and their families navigate the process of filing a claim and ensure they receive the compensation they deserve.
The first step in the process is to determine if the accident was caused by negligence. An experienced pedestrian accident lawyer will be able to investigate the incident and identify any parties that may be held responsible for the victim’s injuries. This includes examining police reports, eyewitness accounts, and any possible videos of the accident.
Once negligence has been established, the pedestrian accident lawyer will be able to help the victim file a claim against the negligent party. This includes gathering evidence to support the claim, such as medical records and any other documentation related to the accident. The lawyer will also assist in negotiating a settlement or taking the case to trial if necessary.
In addition to helping victims of pedestrian accidents, a lawyer can also provide advice on how to stay safe in the future. This includes understanding the laws in your area regarding pedestrian right of way and the importance of being aware of your surroundings.
Pedestrian accident lawyers understand the devastation that can occur when an accident happens and can help victims get the justice they deserve. If you or a loved one has been involved in a pedestrian accident, contact an experienced lawyer to help you through the process.