According to data from a study recently released by the Alliance for Biking and Walking, Mississippi not only has low levels of pedestrian traffic, but it is also one of the deadliest states for pedestrians in the country.

While those statistics may seem counterintuitive, the report revealed that areas with low pedestrian traffic are sometimes the most dangerous for people traveling by foot. This may be explained by motorists familiarity with pedestrians in states with high levels of foot traffic; thus, causing drivers to be more aware and more cautious around pedestrians. In areas with little pedestrian traffic, motorists are more likely to cause a serious pedestrian accident.

Unfortunately, the Alliance for Biking and Walking reported that pedestrian traffic in Mississippi is below the national average. Mississippi – along with Florida and Alabama – is one of the top three states when it comes to the rate of pedestrian fatalities every year.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, 47 people lost their lives in pedestrian accidents in Mississippi in 2011. In total, pedestrian fatalities accounted for 7.5 percent of all traffic deaths in the state that year.

Pedestrian accidents a problem across the country

In the United States, 4,432 pedestrians died in collisions with motor vehicles in 2011, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Across the country, pedestrian fatalities increased 3 percent in 2011 from the year prior.

In addition, 69,000 pedestrians suffered injuries after being involved in a collision with a motor vehicle in the U.S. in 2011.

Certain individuals are more likely to be involved in a pedestrian accident than others, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. For instance, 19 percent of the pedestrian fatalities in 2010 were individuals aged 65 and above. In addition, children are at high risk of being involved in a pedestrian accident.

Apart from age, whether an individual – either the motorist or the pedestrian – is impaired by alcohol contributes significantly to the likelihood of a collision. In fact, in almost one-half of all collisions that resulted in a pedestrian fatality, either the motorist or the pedestrian was under the influence of alcohol.

If you or a loved one has been injured in a pedestrian accident in Mississippi, you should learn about your right to recover financially because of the harm caused in the accident. When in such a situation, it is a good idea to consult with a knowledgeable personal injury attorney, who will make certain your interests are protected.