Tools to Diagnose and Solve the Problem

A critical first step towards improving non-motorist safety is to identify the problem. There are many different safety problems that pedestrians and bicyclist's experience, and a safety countermeasure that works at one location may not address the problem at another location. If the safety problem can be identified, it may be easier to recommend solutions. The FHWA's goal is to develop methods to make it easier to determine the true nature of a pedestrian or bicyclist safety problem and to focus in on the most appropriate countermeasures.

Tools:

REVISED Pedsafe 2013: Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection SystemFirst developed in 2003, Pedsafe is an expert system that allows the user to select treatments (mainly engineering with some enforcement and education activities) that help mitigate a known crash problem or help achieve a specific performance objective.

NEW Bicycle Road Safety Audit Guidelines and Prompt Lists
Provides information on how to conduct an RSA and effectively assess the safety of cyclists. These Guidelines provide an overview of the Road Safety Audit process, as well as an overview of basic safety principles and potential hazards  affecting cyclists. Prompt lists are provided to assist RSA team members in considering general issues when performing a BRSA. Contact Gabriel Rousseau at gabe.rousseau@dot.gov or Becky Crowe at rebecca.crowe@dot.gov for more information regarding the use of BRSAs in your state, region or community.

Bicycle Countermeasure Selection System is an expert system that allows the user to select treatments (mainly engineering with some enforcement and education activities) that help mitigate a known crash problem or help achieve a specific performance objective.

Pedestrian and Bicyclist Crash Analysis Tool is a software application intended to assist state and local pedestrian and bicycle coordinators, planners, and engineers in addressing pedestrian and bicyclist crash problems by allowing them to enter and analyze their crash data.

Pedestrian Road Safety Audit Guidelines and Prompt Lists
The document and prompt lists were developed for local and state governments to use in help solving their pedestrian safety problems. The purpose of a pedestrian road safety audit (PRSA) is to provide a multi-disciplinary team approach to solving pedestrian safety issues within a roadway corridor or intersection environment.

Pedestrian Road Safety Audits

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Resources:

NEW Clearing a Path for Pedestrians
This article discussing the FHWA Safety Office's recent resource A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety was published in the July/August 2014 Edition of Public Roads Magazine.

NEW Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon Guide–Recommendations and Case Study (FHWA-SA-14-014):
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) strongly encourages the use of pedestrian hybrid beacons (also known as the High intensity Activated crossWalK (or HAWK)–a pedestrian-activated warning device located on the roadside or on mast arms over midblock pedestrian crossings.  This document expands on the FHWA guidance memo detailed here: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/provencountermeasures/index.htm and offers a case study of a location that successfully used PHB to solve a safety problem.

new A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety
The guide identifies best practices and barriers for sidewalk/ shared use path maintenance: what works and what does not work based on experience from State and local agencies. The guide also provides examples and experiences from jurisdictions that have developed effective policies for selecting and maintaining pedestrian facilities in terms of responsibilities, enforcement, allocation of costs, and related issues.

new Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety Research Report
The research report includes a literature review, review of local maintenance programs including discussions with 50 municipalities and state agencies, and an overall assessment of the current practice of pedestrian facility maintenance.

Evaluation of Pedestrian Countermeasures in Three Cities: San Francisco, Las Vegas and Miami
FHWA awarded grants to the cities of San Francisco, Las Vegas and Miami in 2003 to develop plans fo deploying and evaluating various pedestrian safety countermeasures in high crash "zones" and locations. The purpose of the project was to demonstrate how a city could improve pedestrian safety by performing a detailed analysis of its pedestrian crash problem, identifying and evaluating high crash locations, observing factors such as driver and pedestrian behavior, and deploying various lower cost countermeasures tailored to the site. An independent evaluation was also conducted to compare the countermeasure deployment across the three cities.

Pedestrian Countermeasure Policy Best Practice Report (FHWA-SA-11-017)
This report highlights State departments of transportation (DOTs) that have developed policies related to medians, walkways, and shoulders.

Proven Countermeasures for Pedestrian Safety
This article documenting FHWA's promotion of medians/pedestrian refuge areas, sidewalks, and shoulders to increase pedestrian safety was published in the March/April 2012 Edition of Public Roads Magazine.

Safety Benefits of Raised Medians and Pedestrian Refuge Areas—Booklet (FHWA-SA-10-020)
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) strongly encourages the use of raised medians (or refuge areas) in curbed sections of multi-lane roadways in urban and suburban areas, particularly in areas where there are mixtures of a significant number of pedestrians, high volumes of traffic (more than 12,000 vehicles per day) and intermediate or high travel speeds. This document expands on the FHWA guidance memo detailed here: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/memo071008/. Hardcopies can be ordered here.

Safety Benefits of Raised Medians and Pedestrian Refuge Areas—Tri-Fold Brochure (FHWA-SA-10-031)
The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) strongly encourages the use of raised medians (or refuge areas) in curbed sections of multi-lane roadways in urban and suburban areas, particularly in areas where there are mixtures of a significant number of pedestrians, high volumes of traffic (more than 12,000 vehicles per day) and intermediate or high travel speeds. This document expands on the FHWA guidance memo detailed here: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/memo071008/. Hardcopies can be ordered here.

Safety Benefits of Walkways, Sidewalks, and Paved Shoulders–Booklet (FHWA-SA-10-022)
Annually, around 4,500 pedestrians are killed in traffic crashes with motor vehicles in the United States. Pedestrians killed while "walking along the roadway" account for almost 8 percent of these deaths. Many of these tragedies are preventable. Providing walkways separated from the travel lanes could help to prevent up to 88 percent of these "walking along roadway crashes. This document expands on the FHWA guidance memo detailed here: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/memo071008/. Hardcopies can be ordered here.

Safety Benefits of Walkways, Sidewalks, and Paved Shoulders—Tri-Fold Brochure (FHWA-SA-10-021): Annually, around 4,500 pedestrians are killed in traffic crashes with motor vehicles in the United States. Pedestrians killed while "walking along the roadway" account for almost 8 percent of these deaths. Many of these tragedies are preventable. Providing walkways separated from the travel lanes could help to prevent up to 88 percent of these "walking along roadway crashes.This document expands on the FHWA guidance memo detailed here: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/policy/memo071008/. Hardcopies can be ordered here.

State Best Practice Policy for Medians (FHWA-SA-11-019)
This flyer highlights three agencies that have implemented policies and plans that promote the inclusion of raised medians.

State Best Practice Policy for Shoulders and Walkways (FHWA-SA-11-018)
This flyer highlights three agencies that have implemented policies and plans that promote the inclusion of paved shoulders and walkways.

Toolbox of Countermeasures and Their Potential Effectiveness for Pedestrian Crashes
This "toolbox" documents estimates of the crash reduction that might be expected if a specific countermeasure or group of countermeasures is implemented with respect to pedestrian crashes. The crash reduction estimates are presented as Crash Reduction Factors (CRFs). Traffic engineers and other transportation professionals can use the information contained in this toolbox when trying to figure out which countermeasures would be effective in improving safety at a certain type of locations (such as a signalized intersection).

Resources from other Agencies

A Technical Guide for Conducting Pedestrian Safety Assessments

A Technical Guide for Conducting Bicycling Safety Assessments

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Program Contact

Tamara Redmon

202-366-4077

Gabriel Rousseau

202-366-8044

What's New

The FHWA Safety Office is continually developing new materials to assist states, localities and citizens in improving pedestrian and bicycle safety. The materials listed on this page were completed recently.

New Clearing a Path for Pedestrians

New Pedestrian Forum – Fall 2014

New Understanding Pedestrian Crashes in Louisville, KY 2006-2010

New Bicycle Safer Journey (Revised 2014)

New Pedestrian Hybrid Beacon Guide

new A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety

new Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety Research Report

REVISED Pedsafe 2013: Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System

New Pedestrian Safer Journey 2013 (Revised)  

Proven Countermeasures for Pedestrian Safety

Spotlight on Pedestrian Safety

Promoting the Implementation of Proven Pedestrian Countermeasures

State Best Practice Policy for Medians

State Best Practice Policy for Shoulders and Walkways

Pedestrian Countermeasure Policy Best Practice Report

The State of Florida is developing a statewide Pedestrian Safety Action Plan. They have set up a project website that includes information about the project, workshop presentations and resources relating to pedestrian safety.

Evaluating Pedestrian Safety Countermeasures

Safety Benefits of Raised Medians and Pedestrian Refuge Areas: Brochure, Booklet

Safety Benefits of Walkways, Sidewalks, and Paved Shoulders: Brochure, Booklet

Pedestrian Safety Strategic Plan