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Older pedestrians twice as likely to be injured in back-up parking lot collisions: study

August 1, 2012

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Tallahassee, FL – Pedestrians 75 and older are twice as likely as any other age group to be hit by a motor vehicle backing up in a parking lot, according to a study (.pdf file) from Florida State University.

Researchers analyzed parking lot pedestrian crash data and age differences in navigating through a parking lot. Pedestrians 75 and older also were found to have more serious or fatal injuries in parking lot collisions than any other age group, and pedestrians 65 and older were found to walk slower than younger age groups.

Researchers concluded that the differences in the number of back-up incidents between younger and older pedestrians most likely were due to the reduced reaction time of the older pedestrians. They recommended vehicle manufacturers increase implementation of collision-avoidance technology such as automatic braking when detecting a collision behind the vehicle, as well as educational campaigns targeting older pedestrians.

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