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East Memphis residents speak out after deadly pedestrian crashes

Memphis is said to be one of the most dangerous metro areas in the country for walking.

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Walking in Memphis can be dangerous. Tuesday, police responded to three separate deadly pedestrian crashes. So far this year, there have been at least 78 pedestrian deaths in Memphis. 

Three of them happened in the span of five hours Tuesday night.

This brings the total to almost two dozen more pedestrians hit and killed this year than last.

“I feel like they need to improve the crosswalks," William Grammer, an East Memphis resident that said he was hit near Mt. Moriah, said. 

Tuesday, a man died after he was hit by a car on Riverdale Road and Shelby Drive and police said a woman also died Tuesday night after she was hit by a car in Frayser. 

Residents in East Memphis, where one of those accidents happened, said pedestrian safety is an ongoing issue that’s not getting enough attention.

“They probably ain’t just too quick to build a crosswalk or somewhere around this area," resident Joshua Ford said. "But every day, people constantly coming, walking to the store, walking to the gas station."

According to Smart Growth America, Memphis is the ninth most dangerous metro area in the country for walking.

It’s an issue that the city said it is working to better respond to.

In a statement to ABC24, “several projects in various stages of development will deliver pedestrian safety improvements at locations with a high need and documented crash history." 

Grammer believes improvements are desperately needed. 

"They need to put red arrows where they can’t turn, for a person to get all the way across without somebody turning," Grammer said. "There’s a lot of work that needs to be done to Memphis streets and the crosswalks.”

Another neighbor said that walking is most convenient for those in the area but there aren't enough safe spaces, such as sidewalks and crosswalks.

“On this side [points to a muddy sidewalk area], they don’t have one," Ford said. "So I was just saying for general people, all in the mud, just walking they could have one."

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