A recent article in the Boston Globe called attention to a serious safety problem in Boston: although statistics depict Boston as a safe place for pedestrian, the truth is that most pedestrian accidents are not reported by police to the Registry of Motor Vehicles. While most communities report accidents to the registry in detail, Boston police don’t have time to fill out the necessary reports.

At present, crash data is available through the transportation department and through other avenues, but this information doesn’t make it into public statistics on pedestrian fatalities and accidents. Not that releasing such information would make a massive difference from a safety standpoint, but it doesn’t exactly help raise public awareness either. 

At present, police records show that there were 790 pedestrian-involved accidents in 2013. Emergency medical services show a lower number, which makes sense since they are not always called out to accidents. Crash data does come into use when there is a request for data from traffic engineers. Those requests often follow complaints from the public or road improvement projects.

In any case, it is safe to say that pedestrian safety is an issue in Boston as it is in various other places nationwide. Pedestrians should always be alert to the possibility of accidents, and should understand their right to be compensated in the event they are harmed. Holding a motorist accountable is not necessarily and easy endeavor, though, and it helps to work with an experienced attorney.

Source: Boston Globe, “Most Boston pedestrian accidents go unreported,” Nestor Ramos, August 19, 2014.