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U.S. Roads Dangerous by Design, Group Says

Almost 5,000 Americans die each year on streets engineered for fast cars that make little or no provision for pedestrians or bicyclers, a lobbying group said.

More that 43,000 American have been killed in the past decade in preventable pedestrian accidents, Transportation for America said in a report Monday.

Pedestrian deaths are usually labeled accidents and blamed on errors by motorists or pedestrians, but too many of America's streets are dangerous by design, the organization charged.

The group called for future road projects to take into account the requirements of all users, particularly pedestrians and bicyclists. It urged communities to retrofit poorly designed roads with sidewalks and bicycle lanes, reduce crossing distances and increase the number of crosswalks.

Congress must hold states accountable for making new streets safe for pedestrians, bicyclists and motorists alike, and for retrofitting the most dangerous roads, the group said.