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Pedestrians Twice as Likely to be Involved in Auto Accidents with Electric Cars

As electric cars become more popular on our roads, there are frequently more reports of car accidents involving these vehicles with pedestrians.

The demand for electric vehicles has nowhere near peaked, and as the number of such vehicles increases on our roads, we are understanding more about the specific dangers involving such cars.  While electric cars have their  advantages, they can be extremely silent, and this can pose a threat to  vulnerable users on our roads, like pedestrians. According to the results of a new study, pedestrians are as much as three times more likely to be involved in fatal car accidents involving electric cars compared to gas powered cars.

Both electric and hybrid cars were found to be more dangerous compared to gas powered cars.  The rate of accidents was 5 wrongful deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled in the case of electric cars, and just 2.5 wrongful deaths per 100 million vehicle miles traveled in the case of gas powered vehicles.

The results were based on findings of a study conducted in the United Kingdom, and published recently in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. The researchers found in the study that the actual number of auto accidents involving gas powered vehicles may be higher compared to electric or hybrid vehicles.  As many as three-quarters of the pedestrians injured in car accidents in the study were involved in accidents with gas powered vehicles compared to just 2% who were involved in auto accidents with electric and hybrid vehicles. However, when the researchers accounted for the number of vehicle miles traveled, they found that electric and hybrid vehicles were far more dangerous to pedestrians.

Part of the threat comes from the zero noise emitted from these car engines which makes it much more difficult for a pedestrian to hear an electric car   approaching. The rates were predictably much lower in rural areas, where these cars are likely less popular, and much higher in urban areas.  The  researchers also believe that the quality of ambient noise also plays a part in the higher threat to pedestrians in cities.  Background noise is much lower in rural areas than in urban areas which makes these vehicles even more difficult to hear on a busy street.

If anything, the results point to the need for pedestrians to be absolutely aware of their surroundings at all times while walking.  Avoid distractions on your cell phone and do not wear headphones while walking, since they can prevent you from hearing vehicles that are approaching, especially electric cars that are extra silent.

The  Atlanta car accident lawyers at Katz Personal Injury Lawyers are dedicated to the representation of persons who have suffered injuries in car accidents in the metro Atlanta region and across the state of Georgia.  If  you or a loved one   have suffered injuries in a car accident, talk to a lawyer at our firm and discuss your legal options for a claim for damages. You  may qualify for compensation that includes medical costs, lost income and other damages.

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