Recent spike in car vs. pedestrian fatalities - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

Recent spike in car vs. pedestrian fatalities

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YAKIMA COUNTY, Wash.-- Fatalities involving a car versus a pedestrian seem to be on the rise with 4 car/pedestrian fatalities in the Lower Valley in the past month and a half.

There were 2 just this past week. One being that 11 year-old  boy hit in the roadway while waiting for the school bus.
State Patrol says statewide fatality collisions are going down, with about 60 per year being car versus pedestrian.

Locally, they say we see about 5 pedestrian fatalities per year.

So far in 2011, there have already been 5, just in Toppenish and Wapato alone.
Our State Patrol district covers 7 counties, most of their car/pedestrian accidents happen here.

"The vast majority of the fatality collisions that we investigate, the car pedestrian ones, they do happen up here in the Yakima County area. Mainly because we have a large population that lies in a rural environment," said Lt. Terry Liebrecht of the Washington State Patrol.

Lt. Liebrecht says most of these accidents were caused because the pedestrian was in the roadway when they shouldn't have been.

He also says that because it wouldn't be feasible to put in better lighting in these rural areas, folks that live there need to pay more attention when walking around.