DeAnn Owens
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NHTSA Releases Goals for 2021 Pedestrian Safety Month

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traffic light pedestrian signal
Pedestrian crossing signal
Photo: Edward Lich via Pixabay

Move over fall and Halloween, there is another reason why the month of October is important. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, October has the special distinction of being National Pedestrian Safety Month.

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The NHTSA says its goal for October and the campaign around pedestrian safety is: “to increase awareness around pedestrian safety and remind drivers to watch for pedestrians each and every time they are behind the wheel.”


According to the NHTSA, in 2019, 6,205 pedestrians died as a result of a traffic crash.

“A pedestrian was killed every 85 minutes in traffic crashes in 2019,” reports the NHTSA.

National Pedestrian Safety Month outline

The agency has designated a theme or subject for each week of October.

Week one focused on the theme that everyone is a pedestrian.

“Whether it’s walking to your car, walking to the office, or walking for exercise, everyone deserves to get to their destination safely,” according to the NHTSA.

Drivers are reminded to pay extra caution when traveling near schools, in neighborhoods, and parks and to always be on the lookout for children and teens.

Week two was all about the importance of following speed limits.

“Slower speeds save lives. In fact, the chances of a pedestrian surviving a crash rapidly decrease when the vehicle speed is above 30 mph,” according to the NHTSA.

Week three will focus on innovative driver-assist technologies, such as pedestrian automatic emergency braking systems and rear backup cameras. It will also highlight how important it is for drivers to have high-quality headlights.  

The last week of October will focus on safe roads.

“Roadways designed to safely accommodate road users provide a solid foundation for use of emerging vehicle technologies and actively encourage safe behaviors among drivers and other road users,” reports the NHTSA.

When behind the wheel, practice extra caution when pedestrians are present.