TOPIC IV: BICYCLIST & PEDESTRIAN ROAD SAFETY

Trends in Bicyclist Fatalities

Footnote 29

Footnotes 30 31

In 1975, bicyclist deaths were evenly distributed (50/50) between urban and rural land uses. Since that time, bicyclist deaths have become increasingly an urban problem, with 71% of bicyclist deaths occurring in urban areas in 2016. 32

Most bicyclist deaths occur on arterial roadways, with 61% of bicyclist deaths in 2016 occurring on principal or minor arterial roadways, despite this type of road making up only 10% of the national roadway system. 33

Bicyclist Fatalities as a Percent of All Road Fatalities

The proportion of all traffic fatalities that are bicyclists has increased in recent years. Bicyclists represent over 2% of traffic fatalities while only accounting for 1% of trips. 34

Bicyclist Fatality Rates Per Capita & Per Bicycle Commuter

Footnote 35

The rate of bicyclist fatalities per capita and per estimated bicycle commuters has increased since 2014 for both metrics.

Bicyclist Fatalities, by Race of Bicyclist Killed

Footnotes 36 37

Trends in Pedestrian Fatalities

After decades of declines, the number of pedestrian fatalities per year has increased since 2009. 38 A 2011 report by the AAA Foundation for Highway Safety found that the risk of death for pedestrians increased dramatically with speed – so that a pedestrian hit at 30 mph had a 25% risk of death, but a pedestrian hit at 40 mph had a 50% risk of death. 39 In 2016, ProPublica organized the data from that study into an interactive tool so that individuals can see how vehicle speeds affect pedestrian survival in crashes. 40

In 2016, 79% of pedestrian deaths occurred on roads with speed limits of 35 mph or greater. We cannot estimate if this is an over-representation because the U.S. DOT Bureau of Transportation Statistics does not provide data on miles of road by posted speed limit.

FIGURE 1.4.8 – PEDESTRIAN FATALITIES BY POSTED SPEED LIMIT
41

Pedestrian Fatalities as a Percent of All Road Fatalities

As with bicyclists, the proportion of all traffic fatalities that are pedestrians has increased in recent years. Pedestrians make up 16% of traffic fatalities while only accounting for about 12% of trips. 42

Pedestrian Fatality Rates Per Capita & Per Pedestrian Commuter

The rate of pedestrian fatalities per capita and per 10,000 pedestrian commuters has increased since 2009 for both metrics. 43

Pedestrian Fatalities, by Race of Pedestrian Killed

Data suggests that black people are over-represented among pedestrian fatalities, with black people accounting for slightly over 19% of pedestrian deaths while representing less than 14% of the US population.

Footnotes 44 45

Bicyclist & Pedestrian Deaths per Million Trips

FIGURE 1.4.13 – DEATHS PER MILLION TRIPS

Footnote 46

Bicycling appears to be significantly more dangerous than walking on a per trip basis. This may reflect the short distance of many walking trips, with more than 80% of walking trips being 1 mile or less while less than 60% of bicycling trips are 1 mile or less. 47 The rate of death per million trips increased for both bicycling and walking between 2009 and 2017.

Bicyclist & Pedestrian Deaths per Billion Minutes

FIGURE 1.4.14 – DEATHS PER BILLION MINUTES

Footnote 48

Bicycling continues to appear to be more dangerous than walking when examined by death rate per billion minutes. The rate of death per billion minutes increased for both bicycling and walking between 2009 and 2017.

Bicyclist & Pedestrian Deaths per Billion Miles

FIGURE 1.4.15 – DEATHS PER BILLION MILES

Footnote 49

Unlike the two other exposure measures  derived from the National Household Travel Survey (NHTS) – deaths per million trips and deaths per billion minutes – walking appears to be significantly more dangerous than bicycling according to deaths per billion miles. According to the NHTS, the average (mean) bicycle trip length was 2.38 miles while the average (mean) walking trip length was .87 miles. 50

On-Road Bicyclist & Pedestrian Injuries

Data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention WISQARS database comes from hospital emergency rooms. There can be significant variance between emergency room data on fatalities and traffic safety data on fatalities reported by law enforcement officers.

Footnote 51

29

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/bicycles (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”).

30

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/bicycles (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”).

31

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Fatality Analysis Reporting System (query of 2016 data). Available at https://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov//QueryTool/QuerySection/SelectYear.aspx.

32

National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Fatality Analysis Reporting System (query of 2016 data). Available at https://www-fars.nhtsa.dot.gov//QueryTool/QuerySection/SelectYear.aspx.

33

Bureau of Transportation Statistics (2013). Table 1-1: Public Road Length, Miles by Functional System. Available at https://cms.bts.dot.gov/archive/ publications/state_transportation_statistics/state_transportation_statistics_2015/chapter-1/table1_1.

34

Compare to 1.1.1: Trends in Prevalence of Bicycling and Walking for All Trips.

35

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/bicycles (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”). U.S. Census Bureau (2016). American Community Survey Tables B01003 and B08006 1-year estimates. Available at https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml.

36

NHTSA FARS Database; (Query: Table Option 1; Person Fields “Hispanic Origin,” “Injury Severity,” “Person Type,” and “Race;” Injury Severity = “(4)Fatal Injury (K), Person Type = “(6)Bicyclist.”)

37

U.S. Census Bureau. United States Quick Facts. Available at https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/RHI225216

38

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at https://iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestri- ans-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/pedestrians.

39

Tefft, B.C. AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety (2011). Impact Speed and a Pedestrian’s Risk of Severe Injury or Death. Available at http://aaafoundation.org/impact-speed-pedestrians-risk-severe-injury-death/.

40

Groeger L., ProPublica (2016). Unsafe at Many Speeds. Available at https://www.propublica.org/article/unsafe-at-many-speeds.

41

Groeger L., ProPublica (2016). Unsafe at Many Speeds. Available at https://www.propublica.org/article/unsafe-at-many-speeds.

42

Compare to 1.1.1: Trends in Prevalence of Bicycling and Walking for All Trips

43

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/pedes- trians (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”). U.S. Census Bureau (2016). American Community Survey Tables B01003 and B08006 1-year estimates. Available at https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml.

44

NHTSA. FARS Database (Query: Table Option 1; Person Fields “Hispanic Origin,” “Injury Severity,” “Person Type,” and “Race;” Injury Severity = “(4)Fatal Injury (K), Person Type = “(5)Pedestrian.”).

45

U.S. Census Bureau. United States Quick Facts. Available at https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/US/RHI225216

46

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/pe- destrians (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”. “2017” data reflects a 5-year average of available fatality data from 2012-2016 and “2009” data reflects a 5-year average of available fatality data from 2005-2009). Ralph Buehler (2017). Analysis of 2009 and 2017 National Household Travel Survey data for the League of American Bicyclists.

47

U.S. DOT Federal Highway Administration. 2017 National Household Travel Survey (Person Trips with Trip distance in miles, derived from route geometry returned by Google Maps API, or from reported loop-trip distance and mode, derived). Available at https://nhts.ornl.gov/.

48

U.S. DOT Federal Highway Administration. 2017 National Household Travel Survey (Person Trips with Trip distance in miles, derived from route geometry returned by Google Maps API, or from reported loop-trip distance and mode, derived). Available at https://nhts.ornl.gov/.

49

Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/pe- destrians (uses data from NHTSA FARS and includes fatalities categorized as “other and/or unknowns”. “2017” data reflects a 5-year average of available fatality data from 2012-2016 and “2009” data reflects a 5-year average of available fatality data from 2005-2009). Ralph Buehler (2017). Analysis of 2009 and 2017 National Household Travel Survey data for the League of American Bicyclists.

50

U.S. DOT Federal Highway Administration. 2017 National Household Travel Survey (Person Trips with Trip distance in miles, derived from route geometry returned by Google Maps API, or from reported loop-trip distance and mode, derived). Available at https://nhts.ornl.gov/.

51

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Web-based Injury Statistics Query and Reporting On-road non-fatal injuries (2006-2016). Available at https://www.cdc.gov/injury/wisqars/index.html. Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. Fatality Facts. Available at http://www.iihs.org/iihs/topics/t/pedestrians-and-bicyclists/fatalityfacts/pedestrians.