Safety is a shared responsibility, both vehicle operators and pedestrians on road should put the phone down, be visible and stay sober.
The Horner Road commuter lot in Prince William County along I-95 was designed for a capacity of about 250 parking spaces with access to HOV lanes. Two decades later it is now used by more than 1,500 vehicles between 5:30 and 7:30 AM, in addition about 2,600 commuters park and walk to the bus stops and Sluglines. The dangerous zone in the commuter lot is between the lot 7 and 8 near the access ramp, which is not redesigned to the traffic. Vehicles trying to get on the HOV lanes, vehicles trying to parking, buses and pedestrians walking to bus stop, car pool and Sluglines move in all directions. Illegal parking, elevation and low visibility during winter or rain increases the possibility of accident.
Distraction, visibility and design contributes to the unsafe situation at the Horner Road Commuter Lot. Some of the results from the 2019 Governors Highway Safety Association study on Pedestrian Traffic Fatalities by State are listed below helps understand the issue.
- Cellphone use, which can be a significant source of distraction for all road users, the reported number of smartphones in active use in the U.S. increased by 4% from 2017 to 2018, and by more than 400% from 2009 to 2018
- About 75% of pedestrian fatalities occur after dark, and recent increases in the number of pedestrian fatalities are occurring largely at night. From 2009 to 2018, the number of nighttime pedestrian fatalities increased by 67%, compared to a 16% increase in daytime pedestrian fatalities.
- Alcohol impairment is a major contributing factor. An estimated 33% of fatal pedestrian crashes involved a pedestrian with a BAC of 0.08% or higher, and an estimated 16% of drivers involved in these crashes had a BAC of 0.08% or higher.