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Pedestrian Forum – Fall 2013

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U.S. Department of Transportation
Federal Highway Administration

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In this issue:

New! A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety

Update on FHWA's Pedestrian Safety Focus Cities Effort

Everyone is a Pedestrian!

FHWA Personnel Change

New! From FHWA and NHTSA

Revision of Popular FHWA Resource: Pedsafe

The FHWA Safety Office released an updated version of its popular resource PEDSAFE 2013 (Pedestrian Safety Guide and Countermeasure Selection System), which was first released in 2003. PEDSAFE 2013 is intended to provide the latest information available for improving the safety and mobility of those who walk, particularly as it pertains to roadway design and physical roadway features.

Screenshot of the PEDSAFE website.

PEDSAFE 2013 is comprised of four sections:

  1. The Guide section helps practitioners better understand the issues facing pedestrians, how to analyze crashes and how to implement new treatments.
  2. The Countermeasure section includes a comprehensive list of 67 engineering countermeasure options, as well as details of each countermeasure, in terms of its description, purpose, considerations, safety effect, and cost.
  3. There are also 85 success stories, or case studies. Each case study documents one or more of the countermeasures which have been featured, along with the background of the problem, pedestrian safety solution selected, and the results of the treatment.
  4. The expert system software (tool) allows the user to input the basic safety problem and site conditions of a location and will propose a "short list" of candidate treatment options to address the specific pedestrian safety problem for that situation.

While the earlier version of PEDSAFE was produced in printed form, the latest iteration of PEDSAFE 2013 is only available online. The new site offers a variety of interactive tools to best help practitioners address pedestrian safety issues.

PEDSAFE can be accessed at http://www.pedbikesafe.org/PEDSAFE.

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New! A Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety

FHWA will release a Guide for Maintaining Pedestrian Facilities for Enhanced Safety in late November.  The project had  two objectives

  1. To compile a research report documenting the best practices for inspection and routine maintenance for pedestrian facilities; maintenance needs of different types of pedestrian facility surfacing materials, (including truncated dome tactile surfaces and wheelchair ramps); geographic differences in sidewalk/shared use path maintenance; types of equipment used; and other issues having to do with pedestrian facility maintenance.
  2. To develop a guidebook for maintaining pedestrian facilities for enhanced safety based on the outcome of the research report mentioned in objective 1.

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.

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.   

Both documents will be  available for viewing and downloading at: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/tools_solve/ by November 25.

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Update on FHWA's Pedestrian Safety Focus States and Cities Effort

Focus cities map highlights San Franciso, Los Angeles, Stockton, and San Diego, CA; Phoenix and Tucson, AZ; Albuquerque, NM; Fort Worth, Dallas, Austin, Houston, and San Antonio, TX; Tulsa, OK; New Orleans, LA; St. Louis, MO; Chicago, IL; Detroit, MI; New York, NY; Philadelphia, PA; Newark, NJ; Washington, DC; Louisville, KY; Atlanta, GA; Jacksonville, Tampa, Orlando, St. Petersburg, Fort Lauderdale, and Miami, FL; and finally, San Juan, PR.

Since 2004, FHWA's Office of Safety has been working to aggressively reduce pedestrian deaths by focusing extra resources on the cities and states with the highest pedestrian fatalities and/or fatality rates. As mentioned in the Winter 2012 Pedestrian Forum Newsletter, FHWA revamped its approach to include more Focus Cities (see map below).

In the past couple of years, much progress has been made within the focus states and cities to improve pedestrian safety and walkability:

As mentioned on page 3 of this newsletter, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is in the process of awarding grants to several focus locations to implement the education and law enforcement components of their pedestrian safety action plans.

For more information on activities in the focus states and cities, please visit the website at: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/ped_focus/

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U.S. DOT Secretary announces "Everyone is a Pedestrian" Initiative

USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx

"Whether you live in a city or a small town, and whether you drive a car, take the bus or ride a train, at some point in the day, everyone is a pedestrian. We all have a reason to support pedestrian safety, and now, everyone has new tools to help make a difference."

— USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx

U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx on August 5 announced a new set of tools to help communities combat the rising number of pedestrian deaths that have occurred over the last two years. As part of the campaign, NHTSA announced the availability of $2 million in pedestrian safety grants available to FHWA's pedestrian focus cities (see more info on focus cities on page 2 of this newsletter), and launched a one-stop shop website www.nhtsa.gov/nhtsa/everyoneisapedestrian/ with safety tips and resources for local leaders, city planners, parents and others involved in improving pedestrian safety.

"Whether you live in a city or a small town, and whether you drive a car, take the bus or ride a train, at some point in the day, everyone is a pedestrian," said Secretary Foxx. "We all have a reason to support pedestrian safety, and now, everyone has new tools to help make a difference."

States had until Aug. 30 to apply for a total of $2 million that could be used for education and enforcement initiatives in 29 focus cities where pedestrian deaths are greater than the national average.

The new website pulls pedestrian safety information from both NHTSA and the FHWA, and provides safety tips and resources that communities can use to keep pedestrians safe. These resources include information for parents on teaching children about safe walking, reports on effective pedestrian projects for state highway safety offices, and guides for community pedestrian safety advocates.

"We continue to see high rates of pedestrian fatalities in major cities and across every demographic," said NHTSA Administrator David Strickland. "To help stop the recent increase in deaths and injuries, we need everyone to play a role in pedestrian safety. Working with partners on the federal, state, local and individual level, we hope to turn this concerning trend around."

According to NHTSA data, 4,432 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in 2011 – an 8 percent increase since 2009. "We are committed to making roads, highways and bridges safer for pedestrians," said Federal Highway Administrator Victor Mendez. "We're working to create safer environments for everyone, whether it's getting proven safety measures onto roads and at intersections or sharing online resources with schools, teachers, and parents that teach kids pedestrian safety."

Additional information on the new pedestrian data can be found in NHTSA's latest issue of SAFETY 1N NUM3ERS, an online monthly newsletter on hot topics in auto safety – including problem identification, people at risk, and recommended practices and solutions to mitigate injury and death on our nation's road-ways.

For more information, check out NHTSA's new website with pedestrian safety resources www.nhtsa.gov/nhtsa/everyoneisapedestrian/

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FHWA Personnel Changes

Dan Goodman

Dan Goodman is the new Transportation Specialist on the Livability Team in the Office of Human Environment. Prior to his current position, he served as a Senior Planner at Toole Design Group. Dan is contributing to many of FHWA's livability initiatives, including pedestrian and bicycle facility planning and design, policy development, outreach, and education. He is working with an intra-agency pedestrian and bicycle working group and contributing to the Livability Team's work with the Partnership for Sustainable Communities. Dan is also the Chair of the Transportation Research Board's Pedestrian Research Subcommittee. He can be reached at daniel.goodman@dot.gov or (202) 366-9064.

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New! From FHWA and NHTSA

Bicycle and Pedestrian Facility Flexibility Design:

FHWA released a memorandum on August 20 expressing support for taking a flexible approach to bicycle and pedestrian facility design. The memo emphasizes using the following design guides and going beyond minimum requirements in developing non-motorized transportation networks (particularly in urban areas):

The memo can be viewed at: https://www.fhwa.dot.gov/environment/bicycle_pedestrian/guidance/design_guidance/design_flexibility.cfm

Countermeasures That Work: a Highway Safety Countermeasure Guide for State Highway Safety Offices, Seventh Edition, 2013:

is a basic reference guide, designed to assist State Highway Safety Offices (SHSOs) and others involved in the field of highway safety in selecting and implementing effective, evidence- based countermeasures to address traffic safety problem areas. The publication:

This year's publication is the Seventh Edition of Countermeasures that Work. It contains chapters regarding:

The report is available at Countermeasures That Work: A Highway Safety Countermeasure Guide for State Highway Safety Offices, Seventh Edition, 2013. A Traffic Tech about the publication is also available. For more information about Countermeasures that Work, contact Kristie Johnson at Kristie.Johnson@dot.gov

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Text: FHWA

Tamara Redmon, Pedestrian Safety Program Manager
Federal Highway Administration
1200 New Jersey Avenue SE
Room E71-303
Washington, DC 20590

Phone: 202-366-4077
Fax: 202-366-3222
E-mail: tamara.redmon@dot.gov

This Pedestrian Forum is available on the Web at http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/ped_bike/pedforum/
To receive information on future newsletters, please use the e-subscription service provided on this site: http://safety.fhwa.dot.gov/esubscribe.cfm#ped. Scroll down to "Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety" and select "subscribe" next to "Pedestrian Forum."

The promotion of transportation alternatives is a high priority of the U.S. Department of Transportation. Ideally, each community provides safe and convenient transportation choices to all citizens, whether it's by walking, bicycling, transit, or driving. Each year, unfortunately, pedestrian fatalities comprise about 13 percent of all traffic fatalities and there are approximately 4,200 pedestrian deaths. Another 70,000 pedestrians are injured in roadway crashes annually. The numbers are improving, but we still have a ways to go. Pedestrian safety improvements depend on an integrated approach that involves the four E's: Engineering, Enforcement, Education, and Emergency Services. The Pedestrian Forum highlights recent pedestrian safety activities related to the four E's that will help save lives.

Page last modified on November 3, 2013
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