Pedestrians are most likely to sustain injuries in motor vehicle incidents during the late afternoon or evening hours than at any other time of day. The six-hour time span of 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. accounted for 33,000 pedestrian injuries in 2019, nearly 45% of all such injuries in the country, according to National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Why do pedestrian injuries take place during these times? Late afternoons often see an increase in vehicle traffic as drivers return home from work, while low visibility may affect drivers in the evening. However, careless and reckless driving behavior is another factor.
Later afternoon and evening
Speeding, distracted driving, failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks, ignoring traffic signals and impaired driving are among the factors that contributed to the 76,000 pedestrian injuries and nearly 3,700 deaths in 2019.
According to NHTSA statistics, here is a breakdown of the times of day in which pedestrians most likely were injured in 2019, along with their percentage share of the 76,000 injuries:
- 3 p.m. to 5:59 p.m.: A total of 22.3%
- 6 p.m. to 8:59 m.: A total of 21.3%
- Noon to 2:59 p.m.: A total of 13.1%
- 9 p.m. to 11:59 p.m.: A total of 11.9%
- 9 a.m. to 11:59 a.m.: A total of 11.4%
- 6 a.m. to 8:59 a.m.: A total of 11.2%
Meanwhile, nearly half of all pedestrian deaths in 2019 occurred in the evening and late evening hours from 6 p.m. until midnight. These numbers, too, may be attributed to careless driver behavior, including drunk driving.
Beware of reckless drivers
Pedestrians must look out for themselves, remaining vigilant and alert no matter what time of day. A mistake by a driver can lead to serious injuries and a hospital stay for you. Remember, there a many careless and selfish drivers out there. When a pedestrian encounters a careless driver, beware.