The release of the 2020 American Fitness Index saw the average pedestrian fatality rate across the U.S.’s 100 largest cities grow from 2.2 deaths per 100,000 residents to 2.6. That represents approximately 1,680 lives lost, an increase of 261 deaths from the previous report.
Neighborhoods connected by sidewalks, protected bike lanes, lighting and benches are essential for reducing pedestrian fatalities. Safety, both real and perceived, can impact how often residents walk or bike in their neighborhoods. The 10 deadliest cities for pedestrians averaged 5.5 pedestrian deaths per 100,000 residents while the 10 safest cities averaged 0.6 fatalities per 100,000 residents.
To raise awareness of this rising number, several states have launched October as Pedestrian Safety Month.
“Pedestrian deaths are unacceptably high so federal leadership to achieve zero deaths is absolutely critical. As motor vehicles have become increasingly safer for occupants due to design changes and the addition of supplemental safety features, the same can’t be said for pedestrians. More must be done to ensure people on foot can safely travel our roadways.” – Pam Shadel Fischer, GHSA Sr. Director of External Engagement and author of several national best practice reports on pedestrian, bicyclist and micromobility safety.
The most dangerous cities for pedestrians are (average deaths per 100,000 residents):
100. Hialeah, FL (7.5)
99. Phoenix, AZ (6.6)
98. Albuquerque, MN (6.1)
97. Stockton, CA (5.5)
96. (tie) Miami, FL (5.1)
96. (tie) Tampa, FL (5.1)
96. (tie) Detroit, MI (5.1)
93. (tie) St. Petersburg, FL (4.9)
93. (tie) New Orleans, LA (4.9)
91. El Paso, TX (4.7)