South Sound News

Number of pedestrians killed on the rise, state says

SEATTLE — There are many accomplishments worth highlighting in a quarterly report from the state, including a whopping 25.5 percent increase in the number of people following the @WSDOT Twitter account.

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But one data point that is — somewhat surprisingly — highlighted is that of the number of people killed while walking or biking.

People on foot or a bike accounted for a total of 22 percent of statewide traffic fatalities in 2017, which is a two percent increase over 2016.

There were 122 pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities on state public roads last year, up from 105 in 2016.

A five-year trend shows a continual increase in pedestrian deaths. In 2013, there were 50. That number hit triple digits for the first time in 2017.

Bicyclist fatalities, however, are decreasing, with only 13 reported in 2017, down from 17 in 2016.

A total of 565 traffic fatalities were reported in 2017.

Between 2013 and 2017, 73 percent of pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities in the state occurred on roads with 30 mph speed limits or higher. Meanwhile, 62 percent occur on city streets, with 26 percent on state routes, and 11 percent on county roads.

Read the entire report here.

The state has a goal to reduce the number of traffic deaths and serious injuries to zero by 2030. The "Target Zero" plan was created after more than 1,300 people died between 2012 and 2013.

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