Effective Interventions to Reduce Multiple-Threat Conflicts and Improve Pedestrian Safety

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

When a driver stops for a pedestrian, the pedestrian may be struck by a second driver traveling in the same direction of travel in the next lane, a scenario known as a multiple-threat crash. Prior studies primarily focused on yielding distance as a proxy measure for measuring multiple-threat risk. This paper details a multifaceted high visibility enforcement program with an emphasis on reducing multiple-threat risks to pedestrians, by directly measuring observed multiple-threat passing at unsignalized, marked crosswalks. The objective of the study was to increase driver compliance with crosswalk laws and reduce multiple-threat passing. The second objective of the study was to determine which other factors are predictive of multiple-threat passing rates. At 16 selected sites, coders observed driver behavior with special attention given to any drivers who passed a stopped or yielding vehicle in the same direction of travel. For baseline measurements, multiple-threat passing was observed at 11.86% of crossings. After sustained education, enforcement, and engineering efforts across several months, not only did driver yielding rates improve, but multiple-threat passing declined to 3.17% at the end of the program. Furthermore, the analysis indicated that advance stop lines are directly associated with fewer multiple-threat passes and that higher speeds are associated with more multiple-threat passes. This finding demonstrates the efficacy of this intervention approach not only on increasing yielding for pedestrians but also for reducing the risk of multiple-threat crashes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)149-159
Number of pages11
JournalTransportation Research Record
Volume2674
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - May 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors thank the Saint Paul Police Department, the City of Saint Paul Public Works Department, the Saint Paul City Council and Mayor?s Office, and Saint Paul Public Schools. The authors thank the HumanFIRST Laboratory staff for their dedicated work on this project. The authors offer special thanks to Minnesota Department of Transportation for funding this research and supporting this project. The author(s) disclosed receipt of the following financial support for the research, authorship, and/or publication of this article: This work was supported by the Minnesota Department of Transportation (Award number 1003325 wo 26).

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