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Releases Report on Crashes Involving Pedestrians in the U.S. –
Siemens VDO Automotive Responds
D.C. - Watch where
you’re walking – it could be dangerous to your health.
Nearly one in five pedestrians killed on America's roadways
is the victim of a hit-and-run crash, according to a major research
report released by the U.S. Department of Transportation's National
Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
report, NHTSA's most recent analysis of pedestrian fatalities,
indicates that young children, as well as seniors, are especially
likely to be the victims of fatal crashes involving pedestrians.
than a fifth of all children ages 5 to 9 killed in traffic crashes
were pedestrians. The age group with the highest rate of pedestrian
fatalities are those 70 and over. "Clearly, some of the most
vulnerable members of our society – the young and elderly –are
often the victims of serious pedestrian crashes. And the involvement
of alcohol in many of these fatal crashes makes them especially
senseless," said NHTSA Administrator Jeffrey W. Runge, M.D.
Pedestrian fatalities now account for about 12 percent of all deaths
related to motor vehicle crashes in the country.
new NHTSA report analyzes the incidence of pedestrian fatalities in
single vehicle crashes, which accounted for more than 90 percent of
all pedestrian fatalities. The report focuses on pedestrian
fatalities between 1998 and 2001.
the report's key findings about pedestrian deaths are these:
18 percent involve hit-and-run crashes.
78 percent occur at non-intersections.
44 percent occur on roadways without crosswalks.
64 percent occur on urban roadways.
63 percent of pedestrians killed are male.
18 percent of all pedestrian fatalities occur between midnight and 6
46 percent of all pedestrian fatalities occur between 6 p.m. and
in a related story, Siemens
VDO Automotive is addressing the growing global concern
regarding increased incidents of pedestrian injuries caused by
vehicles by extending safety beyond occupant protection.
The company is utilizing its global network of innovation to
respond to an escalating number of pedestrian/vehicle accidents in
the European Union (EU) and international automobile manufacturers
have set a goal to reduce by half the number of victims of
pedestrian/vehicle accidents by 2010.
United States safety organizations and regulators are
intently observing this initiative with the possibility of pursuing
similar actions to improve pedestrian safety in the American traffic
have enjoyed increasing protection over the past few years from
elaborate safety systems ranging from airbags to electronic
stability programs. As auto manufacturers are being held to a higher
safety standard for drivers and passengers, they’re now addressing
safety outside the vehicle.
Restraint Systems has been studying and exploring various pedestrian
protection strategies. Recent
crash tests conducted by the organization utilizing sophisticated
dummies demonstrated that added space under the hood may reduce the
risk of serious
Altering hood and engine compartment design to move
components such as the battery, hood lock or motor parts out of the
pedestrian impact area has yielded findings indicating a reduced
risk of serious injury. In
addition, Siemens VDO Automotive is pursuing pedestrian and
bicyclist active accident protection systems where the vehicle hood
will lift when coming into contact with a pedestrian to create an
enhanced crush zone. The
feasibility of external airbags, moveable bumpers and other active
cushions are also being researched.