Study: Deadly car crashes on the rise in Arizona

PHOENIX (KSAZ) -- A bus hit a pedestrian in Downtown Phoenix Wednesday, and late Wednesday night, Phoenix Police Sergeant Armando Carbajal said the man, identified as 34-year-old Henry Rodriguez, died at a local hospital, where he was initially transported to in extremely critical condition.

The deadly incident came, as ADOT released a new study that shows an alarming increase in the number of fatal motor vehicle crashes in the last year.

"I know pedestrians are hot button issues, and if you look at the number, it's risen," said Doug Pacey with ADOT. Findings from the ADOT study show a growing number of Arizona motor vehicle crashes, with a death count of 1,000 last year. It's a number including anyone killed on city streets, country roads, reservation road, or state highways in the state by car.

The findings show that driver error continues to be the reason the state sees a hike. 

"Drivers who choose to drive impaired, speed or drive recklessly, choose to drive distracted or they choose to not wear seat belts, those are all the leading factors for traffic fatalities," said Pacey.

The numbers rising over the last three years, with pedestrians accounting for nearly a quarter of the 1,000 killed last year. Some of the accidents were caused by driver error, and others by pedestrian error.

"You know you should always cross in the crosswalk if you're out at night, if your jogging, get your exercise, wear brightly colored clothes," said Pacey.

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