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Baltimore Co Officials: 80% of Pedestrian Crashes Not Driver Error

Updated: Friday, July 11 2014, 02:33 PM EDT

Baltimore County fire and police officials are reminding pedestrians to always cross at a crosswalk or intersection. According to Baltimore County fire department, 80% of pedestrian crashes are caused by the pedestrian -- not the person behind the wheel.

The Baltimore County Fire and Police Departments respond to more than 400 pedestrian-vehicle crashes each year; the number of fatal pedestrian crashes reached a five-year high in 2013.

"Now that summer is here, people are getting out and about more," Battalion Chief Jennifer Utz,  Baltimore County Fire Department said. "Sadly, the means more people will be seriously hurt - or killed - just crossing the street."

Officials say many of these fatal crashes are results of:

-Failure to walk in crosswalks or obey crosswalk signals
-Distracted walking
-Failure to look both ways
-Wearing dark clothing while walking at night

According to Baltimore County officials, 60% of those killed last year in pedestrian-vehicle crashes were over the age of 40. Each year, the Baltimore County Police and Fire Departments respond to about 420 pedestrian-vehicle crashes.

Baltimore County is launching a "Heads Up! Walk Safe" public awareness campaign, focusing on four simple reminders:

-Obey the Law: always cross at a crosswalk or intersection
-Avoid Distractions: put away the cell phones and other electronic devices while crossing
-Be Visible: when walking or running at night, wear bright colors
-Be Aware: be mindful of your surroundings and know when a vehicle is approaching

Baltimore Co Officials: 80% of Pedestrian Crashes Not Driver Error

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