Someone in Marana just became the fourth Tucson area pedestrian fatality this week. This continues a recent trend of increasing pedestrian-vehicle accidents. What do we make of this?

Drivers, pay attention and don’t be distracted. Taking your eyes off the road – even for a moment – can lead to tragedy.

There’s an old saying – “speed kills.” Here’s why. It takes a person 1-2 seconds to react physically to what he or she sees. So the faster you go, the less “perception/reaction” time you have. If you are going 10 miles an hour and a pedestrian unexpectedly appears in front of you, you’ll have more time and distance to react than if you are going 40 mph. So the faster you are going, the less time you have to react. Pay attention and be vigilant.

We all know that pedestrians often don’t use crosswalks, even if they should. When you are driving a vehicle that weighs several thousand pounds, it is your responsibility to pay attention, be vigilant, and avoid hitting things – like people. Especially at higher speeds.

To be sure, Pedestrians should use crosswalks, and this is also part of the problem. However, there are steps motorists can and should take, to limit the increasing number of pedestrians being hit. Pay attention, especially as you go faster.

Pima County recently banned texting and driving. We applaud that move and hope that it will curb distracted driving. Distracted driving also includes eating, grooming or anything else that takes your eyes off the road.

Let’s make it a safe summer for all – when you are behind the wheel, always pay close attention to your surroundings, especially what’s on the road in front of you.

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