CRIME, POLICE + COURTS

Adults are more likely to die in auto-pedestrian crashes, data shows

Dec 11, 2023, 3:26 PM | Updated: May 30, 2024, 11:22 am

Image of a decoy pedestrian in a school crosswalk in West Valley City on Wednesday, March 24, 2021,...

A decoy pedestrian walks in a school crosswalk in West Valley City on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, as West Valley police conduct a crosswalk safety operation. A decoy pedestrian walks in a school crosswalk in West Valley City on Wednesday, March 24, 2021, as West Valley police conduct a crosswalk safety operation. (Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

(Jeffrey D. Allred/Deseret News)

SALT LAKE CITY — Despite a recent rise of children hit by cars in Utah, federal data shows that adults are more likely to die in auto-pedestrian crashes.

Salt Lake City Police Department Spokesperson, Brent Weisberg, said as of Dec. 11, 2023, there have been 20 traffic-related deadly crashes in Salt Lake City. Although that number is lower than it was around the same time last year, it’s still too many. 

“We have always said that any death on our roadways here in Salt Lake City is one too many,” Weisberg told KSL NewsRadio.

The data shows a 40% increase in fatal auto-pedestrian crashes involving adult pedestrians since 2012. Weisberg said SLCPD officers are doing everything they can to mitigate the increase.

“The next part of that is working with the city to create safer roads through engineering,” he said. “We call it the three E’s in law enforcement. Education, enforcement and engineering. We want to do everything we can to make sure all of our roadway users are safe.”

What can you do to prevent auto-pedestrian crashes?

Weisberg said it’s “hard to say” why more adults are being hit. However, many of these auto-pedestrian fatalities share a few characteristics.

“When we’ve gone back and looked at some of our traffic-related deaths, … many of them have happened at night when people are crossing very busy roadways (and) they’re wearing dark clothing,” Weisberg said. “So, we want to make sure that drivers are paying extra close attention to their surroundings. It is so easy to get distracted while you’re driving.”

He advised drivers to pay attention and make sure their headlights are on at night.

“We have cars that now have automatic lights on, but yet we still see people driving at night with their lights turned off,” Weisberg said. “When our police officers do those traffic stops, people will just say ‘Oh, I thought I had [my headlights] on automatic.'”

Drivers need to make sure their cars are in good condition and that they are ready to drive during times like dusk and dawn. Additionally, Weisberg said it’s important for pedestrians to make sure they’re visible when it’s dark outside.

“Whether that’s wearing reflective clothing, or even simply just turning on your cellphone’s light,” he said. “Just that activation of that light being flickered as you’re walking with your phone in your hand could be enough to draw attention to you as a pedestrian.”

Maria Shilaos contributed to this story.

Further reading: 12-year-old boy hit by car in Cottonwood Heights, police say suspected DUI

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Send it to the KSL NewsRadio team here.

Crime, Police + Courts

A driver on West Valley hit two individuals and fled away....

Esme Sanchez Estevez

A driver hit two individuals and fled away on West Valley

On Thursday night a driver hit two individuals. While trying to get away from the police, she crashed with two cars. The Suspect is under investigation.

14 hours ago

A South Jordan police vehicle is pictured in South Jordan. A person was shot by police, and later d...

Esme Sanchez Estevez

BREAKING: Police kill person who allegedly threatened them with a knife

Police in South Jordan say officers shot someone who wielded a knife and came at them in a neighborhood park.

16 hours ago

Rocio Cifuentes hold a picture of her sister, Gaby Ramos, allegedly killed at the hands of her ex-b...

Tim Vandenack, KSL.com

Women ‘need to speak out’: Gaby Ramos killing spurs sister to take up domestic violence cause

Rocio Sifuentes recruit helps in tracking the sister's ex-boyfriend who killed her. Manuel Burciaga-Perea is now jailed in Utah.

1 day ago

Officers stopped the teens in possession of the stolen car  in Kearns. The driver of the stolen car...

Esme Sanchez Estevez

BREAKING: Pursuit of 3 teens who stole a car in Kearns

Officers stopped the teens in possession of the stolen car in Kearns. The driver of the stolen car is still on the run.

1 day ago

A Biden-Harris campaign sign is seen among signs for other Utah Democratic Party candidates during ...

Eric Cabrera

Stealing campaign signs could get you a misdemeanor charge

Police say stealing campaign signs from your neighbor's lawn could cost you a misdemeanor, or even the right to vote.

2 days ago

SLCPD say after criminal behavior among cyclists on the 999 ride...they are enforcing and educating...

Heather Peterson

Salt Lake City police cracking down on 999 Ride crime

Salt lake City Police say after criminal behavior among cyclists on the 999 ride. They are enforcing and educating riders on the law.

2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

Underwater shot of the fisherman holding the fish...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

Your Bear Lake fishing guide

Bear Lake offers year-round fishing opportunities. By preparing ahead of time, you might go home with a big catch!

A group of people cut a purple ribbon...

Comcast

Comcast announces major fiber network expansion in Utah

Comcast's commitment to delivering extensive coverage signifies a monumental leap toward a digitally empowered future for Utahns.

a doctor putting her hand on the chest of her patient...

Intermountain Health

Intermountain nurse-midwives launch new gynecology access clinic

An access clinic launched by Intermountain nurse-midwives provides women with comprehensive gynecology care.

Young couple hugging while a realtor in a suit hands them keys in a new home...

Utah Association of Realtors

Buying a home this spring? Avoid these 5 costly pitfalls

By avoiding these pitfalls when buying a home this spring, you can ensure your investment will be long-lasting and secure.

a person dressed up as a nordic viking in a dragon boat resembling the bear lake monster...

Bear Lake Convention and Visitors Bureau

The Legend of the Bear Lake Monster

The Bear Lake monster has captivated people in the region for centuries, with tales that range from the believable to the bizarre.

...

Live Nation Concerts

All the artists coming to Utah First Credit Union Amphitheatre (formerly USANA Amp) this summer

Summer concerts are more than just entertainment; they’re a celebration of life, love, and connection.

Adults are more likely to die in auto-pedestrian crashes, data shows