Male pedestrians twice as likely to die in collisions with vehicles

Male pedestrians are more likely to be killed in collisions with vehicles.  A study published last November in the journal Injury Prevention set out to determine why this is.  The researchers looked at a number of factors, including distance walked, but found out that this is probably not the cause; men and women walk about the same distance per year on average.  Instead, they attributed the higher death rate to the fact that more pedestrian-vehicle collisions involving a male pedestrian end in fatality.  A summary of the article at Public Health Watchdog says that this could be because males may be more likely to make risky street crossings or be impaired by drugs or alcohol (the abstract and a link to the full text of the original publication can be found here).

A recent incident in the Philadelphia area lends some evidence to these suggestions; on January 1st, a man attempting to cross the Black Horse Pike in Washington Township, New Jersey was struck by a car and killed.  The speed limit along this section of the Black Horse Pike is 50 mph, and the road is relatively wide, making it a hazard for pedestrians.  It is well-known that this road can be dangerous to cross; the portion of the Black Horse Pike that runs through Atlantic County was said to be “among [the] most deadly roads in the state for pedestrians” in 2011.

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