Image: mostly trueStatement: “San Diego is in the top three to five in the country in terms of the percent of traffic fatalities that involve pedestrians. The national average is 12 to 13 percent and ours is 20 to 25 percent,” Andy Hamilton, co-founder of WalkSanDiego, told Uptown News for an article published April 15.

Determination: Mostly True

Analysis: Hamilton was close on the statistics but the ranking’s outdated.

The statistics and rankings come from a national advocacy group called Transportation for America, which reports the safety of metropolitan areas based on federal traffic data. You can find the group’s full report here, but we’ll run through the highlights.

About 12 percent of the nation’s traffic fatalities in 2008 were pedestrians. In that same year, about 20 percent of San Diego’s traffic fatalities were pedestrians. That percentage was the 9th highest in the country, tied with Denver.

In an interview, Hamilton said he got the rankings from an earlier version of the study. In 2004, about 24 percent of San Diego’s traffic fatalities were pedestrians. At the time, that ranked San Diego as having the third highest percentage of pedestrian deaths.

For a visual perspective on local pedestrian deaths, check out the graphic below, using data from the San Diego Medical Examiner’s Office. It accounts for each accidental pedestrian fatality involving a car. Pedestrian deaths peaked in 2002 at 77 and then teetered around 60 each year.


Summer Polacek

Summer Polacek was formerly the Development Manager at Voice of San Diego.

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