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FHWA Home / Safety / Pedestrian & Bicycle / Pedestrian Forum

Pedestrian Forum – Winter 2008

Safe Pedestrians and a Walkable America
VOL. 41, Winter 2008


Each year pedestrian fatalities comprise about 11 percent of all traffic fatalities and there are approximately 4,600 pedestrian deaths. Another 70,000 pedestrians are injured in roadway crashes annually. Safety is important for all roadway users, and the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) has established a goal of reducing pedestrian fatalities and injuries by 10 percent by the year 2008. Pedestrian safety improvements depend on an integrated approach that involves the 4 E’s: Engineering, Enforcement, Education, and Emergency Services. The Pedestrian Forum highlights recent pedestrian safety activities related to the 5 E’s that will help reach FHWA’s safety goals and save lives.

New MUTCD Notice of Proposed Amendments (NPA) Contains Important Provisions for Pedestrians

The Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices NPA was published in the Federal Register on January 2 for public review and comment.The comment period will close on July 31, 2008. For convenience, the Federal Register Notice has been posted on the MUTCD website. http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov/.

The NPA contains many provisions that impact pedestrians, the most notable ones being:

Pedestrian Road Safety Audit (RSA) Guidelines and Prompt Lists Posted

FHWA recently completed this document, and it is available to view and download here: http://www.walkinginfo.org/library/details.cfm?id=3955

An RSA is a formal safety examination of a future roadway plan or project or an in-service facility that is conducted by an independent, experienced multidisciplinary RSA team. All RSAs should include a review of pedestrian safety; however, some RSAs may be conducted to improve an identified pedestrian safety problem. The Pedestrian Road Safety Audit Guidelines and Prompt Lists provide transportation agencies and teams conducting an RSA with a better understanding of the needs of pedestrians of all abilities.  For more information, contact tamara.redmon@dot.gov, or call 202-366-4077.

Pedestrian and Bicyclist Intersection Safety Indices

FHWA’s Pedestrian and Bicycle Intersection Safety Indices (ISI) are a set of models that enable users to identify intersection crossings and intersection approach legs that should be high priority for pedestrian and bicycle safety assessment. A practitioner can use the tool to develop a prioritization scheme for a group of pedestrian crossings or bicyclist approaches. This method enables the practitioner to prioritize and proactively address sites that are the most likely to be a safety concern for pedestrians or bicyclists at an intersection.

Researchers developed Ped ISI and Bike ISI based on two safety ratings--expert opinion of the safety of a site, and observed behaviors (interactions between pedestrians and motorists or bicyclists and motorists). These measures enabled the researchers to use a multifaceted approach to determine the relative safety of a pedestrian crossing or bicycle approach leg.

To develop the Ped ISI and Bike ISI models, researchers studied 68 pedestrian crossings at signalized and unsignalized intersections in Miami, Florida; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; and San Jose, California, and 67 bicycle approaches at signalized and unsignalized intersections in Eugene, Oregon; Gainesville, Florida; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Portland, Oregon.

Through a user-friendly guide, practitioners will be able to use the safety indices to identify which crosswalks and intersection approaches have the highest priority for in-depth pedestrian and bicycle safety evaluations and subsequently use other tools to identify and address potential safety problems. For more information contact Ann Do at ann.do@dot.gov. or by calling 202-493-3319.

To view Final Report, visit: www.tfhrc.gov/safety/ped_bike/pubs/06125/

User Guide: www.tfhrc.gov/safety/ped_bike/pubs/06130/

Techbrief: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/publications/research/safety/pedbike/06129/

NHTSA Awards Education and Enforcement Grant to City of Detroit

In September, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) awarded a cooperative agreement to Wayne State University Transportation Research Group (WSU TRG) in Detroit, Michigan to implement a comprehensive pedestrian safety program that can be replicated nationwide to reduce pedestrian fatalities. WSU TRG will use the contract funds to deploy the education and enforcement pieces of the city’s Pedestrian Safety Action Plan. Their efforts will be focused on high crash locations and high-risk population groups. WSU TRG has formed a Pedestrian Safety Action Team with a group of stakeholders that is providing guidance and input in developing the Action Plan. The project will be evaluated and is scheduled for completion in September 2009.

A Compendium of NHTSA Pedestrian and Bicyclist Traffic Safety Research Projects, 1969-2007

This compendium describes the pedestrian and bicyclist safety research conducted by the Office of Behavioral Safety Research and its predecessor organizations during the period 1969–2007. The compendium begins with a description of the structure and philosophy of the NHTSA pedestrian and bicycle research programs. It is followed by a section that describes the research on the development of taxonomies of crash types, since the results of that research formed the foundation for many of the subsequent NHTSA pedestrian and bicycle research studies. A chronological listing of major activities that occurred in the decades spanned by NHTSA’s pedestrian and bicyclist research programs is then presented. The final section discusses lessons learned from the pedestrian and bicycle research activities. Appendix A to this compendium contains abstracts of relevant research in a standardized format. Appendix B presents lists of pedestrian and bicyclist crash types as they have evolved over the years.

Click to view the full report:  http://www.nhtsa.gov/staticfiles/DOT/NHTSA/Traffic Injury Control/Articles/Associated Files/HS810793.pdf

DOJ's COPS Office Releases Guide for Police on Pedestrian-Vehicle Crashes

The Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) has formulated a problem-oriented guide for police to examine the problem of pedestrian-vehicle crashes resulting in injuries and fatalities. It then provides a series of questions to help law enforcement analyze their local pedestrian injury and fatality problem. Finally, it reviews responses to the problem and what is known about them from evaluative research and police practice.  A guide can be obtained by calling 202-514-4229, or by clicking on:  http://www.cops.usdoj.gov/files/ric/Publications/e090725108.pdf .

This Pedestrian Forum is available on the Web at http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/pedforum/

Editor :
Tamara Redmon, tamara.redmon@dot.gov
Federal Highway Administration
Office of Safety
1200 New Jersey Ave SE, E71-303
Washington DC 20590

Page last modified on January 31, 2013
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