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More pedestrians dying in poorer Ontario neighbourhoods

It appears that auto accidents in Toronto, Ontario, are more common in low-income neighbourhoods. This was the conclusion of CBC Toronto after analysing 11 years' worth of police data from 2008 to 2018. Lower-income communities saw 50% more collisions than higher-income ones.

For example, the 7-kilometre area bordered by Jane Street, Eglinton Avenue West, Weston Road and St. Clair Avenue West saw 5 pedestrians die and 25 others incur life-threatening injuries between 2008 and 2018. CBC Toronto also found that youth under 20 and seniors over 65, the most vulnerable pedestrians, face an even greater risk. This was later confirmed by a study from the Hospital for Sick Children.

Pedestrians of all ages are being put at risk in these poorer neighbourhoods because the road designs there tend not to accommodate them. Rather, such neighbourhoods usually have wide roads for vehicles and faster speed limits.

Safety advocacy groups are pushing for those in low-income neighbourhoods to speak up for change. Among other things, the city should build more traffic calming devices and safety zones. It has been doing this ever since the Vision Zero plan was initiated in 2017. Still, pedestrian death rates are high in Toronto: 45 pedestrians died in 2018, which was the worst year in over a decade.

Pedestrians and bicyclists who are struck by a vehicle may incur a personal injury and other losses both economic and non-economic. That includes medical expenses, pain and suffering and a loss of earning capacity. If victims wish to seek compensation for these losses, they must show that the other party was at fault, so they might want to consult with a lawyer. A lawyer may be able to negotiate for a fair settlement after gathering all the necessary evidence against the defendant.

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