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Minnesota Department of Transportation
This report presents an approach to assess the effect of vehicle traffic volumes and speeds on pedestrian safety. It shows that the probability of standardized pedestrian conflict resulting in a collision can be computed given data on the distribution of vehicle speeds and headways on a residential street. Researchers applied this method to data collected on a sample of 25 residential streets in the Twin Cities and found that collision rates varied between 4 and 64 collisions per 1,000 pedestrian conflicts, depending primarily on the street's traffic volume. Using a model that relates the impact speed of a vehicle to the severity of pedestrian injury, they computed the probabilities of a severe collision. Sensitive to both traffic volume and traffic speed, the severe collision rate varied between 1 and 25 collisions per 1,000 conflicts. Using the same data, researchers also computed the crash reduction factor, used to assess the potential safety effect of a 25 miles per hour speed limit on the sample of residential streets. The estimated crash reductions ranged between .2% and 45%, depending primarily on the degree to which the vehicle speeds currently exceeded 25 miles per hour. Researchers also showed how this computation assists with the reconstruction of actual vehicle/pedestrian collisions.
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MnDOT Library
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