Fatal accident data discussed in this paper were collected for the Pedestrian Injury Causation Study (PICS), a program supported by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Data were collected in five cities throughout the United States over a period of three years, 1977 to 1980, and consist of over 1,997 accidents, 9.5 percent of which were fatal.Data analysis focuses on those factors which are related primarily to fatal injury sustained in pedestrian accidents. Vehicles involved include only automobiles and light trucks (pickups and vans). Comparisons with non-fatal accidents are also provided to highlight major differences between the two accident categories. Major factors analyzed include impact speed, vehicle type, injury sources, injury severity and type. The role of ground contact and of vehicle components in fatal accidents is evaluated for the various vehicle types included in the data.