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Elderly More Vulnerable to Pedestrian Accidents

Elderly pedestrians are more vulnerable to being hit by motor vehicles. An 82-year-old man was struck and killed in the Soundview neighborhood of the Bronx last week. It was at least the 13th pedestrian accident fatality among elderly New Yorkers this year.

The man was hit as he crossed White Plains Road at Watson Avenue around 7:20 PM. He died at Jacobi Hospital after being thrown into the windshield of the car. The driver had no driver's license and a fake New York photo ID. He was not charged in the death of the elderly man, but was cited for traffic violations that included possession of a forged document and for driving without a license.

The local police precinct, the 43rd, has a high rate of pedestrian fatalities. The recent death was the second elderly pedestrian death this year. Since January of 2012, four pedestrian fatalities have occurred in the precinct, including the death of a two-year-old boy.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report last month showing that the risk of dying in a pedestrian accident double among people 75 and older. About 75 percent of the pedestrian deaths occurred in cities. The CDC surveyed around 47,000 traffic fatalities between 2001 and 2010.

Older people often have deficits that make them more vulnerable to pedestrian accidents. Disabilities, balance problems, vision problems and mental confusion can all be factors in pedestrian deaths among the elderly.

Source: Streetsblog.com, "Manuel Verdesoto at Least Thirteenth Senior Killed in NYC Traffic in 2013," May 17, 2013.