Seattle is one of the most pedestrian-friendly cities in the U.S, with an environment that is very conducive to walking, not just for recreation, but also for work. In fact, in 2011 the Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center selected Seattle as one of the most “walk-friendly” cities in the country. Seattle was the only city rated in the Platinum Level of the rankings.
Fortunately for Seattle pedestrians, the city has invested in pedestrian safety to not only make walking in the city convenient, but also to make it safe for pedestrians. The Department Of Transportation's Pedestrian Master Plan has a goal – to make Seattle a city where people will walk safely, with pleasure, “for whatever reasons and at whatever times [they] choose.” The Pedestrian Master Plan Advisory Group also targets more ease of connection between workspaces and recreational spaces.
Most Popular Areas for Walking in Seattle
As outlined by WalkinginSeattle.com, some of the popular pedestrian areas or trails in Seattle are listed below:
- Burke-Gilman -Sammamish River Trail – it connects “schools and businesses throughout the area,” according to WalkinginSeattle.org.
- Chief Sealth Trail – commuters can be seen on the trail and WalkinginSeattle.org reported in August 2013 that there were plans to “open up more access to Downtown.”
- Interurban Trail – commuters use the trail to get to and from South King County and other areas of the city.
- Alki Trail – a scenic trail that bicyclists and joggers might also use the five-mile trail.
- Ship Canal Trail – there’s an extension that opens the trail to Downtown Seattle, according to the website, and connects the Burke-Gilman Trail and the Emerson Street bike path.
These are just a sampling of the trails and pedestrian areas that residents and visitors in Seattle can enjoy and use to get around the various neighborhoods throughout the city.
Accident Risks Facing Seattle Pedestrians
Those who choose to go on foot should keep safety in mind at all times, even when the city make efforts to improve safety. Although the city has invested in walking infrastructure not just for leisure and recreation but also for work purposes, driver error and other factors do increase the risk of accidents.
Some frequent causes of pedestrian accidents include:
- inattentive or distracted drivers (texting while driving or use of cell phones while driving can prevent a motorist from spotting a pedestrian in time to avoid an accident);
- drivers under the influence of alcohol; and
- speeding drivers (a driver at excessive speeds may not be able to stop in time to avoid a pedestrian).
Texting pedestrians may also increase their own risks of being involved in an accident. Besides texting and using cell phones while walking, pedestrians may also increase accident risks if they are listening to music on their mobile phones or mp3 devices. That reduces their ability to hear an approaching vehicle, a honking car, or other accident cues.
If you have suffered injuries in a pedestrian accident in Seattle that a motorist caused, you may seek compensation in a pedestrian accident claim. Speak with a pedestrian accident lawyer at Max Meyers Law. Call to schedule a free appointment with a lawyer and discuss your claim whether you were in a pedestrian area or other spot near the roadways.