Cost Effective Safety Engineering Countermeasures Help Protect Vulnerable Road Users
Presenting Pedestrian/Bicyclist Countermeasures. FDOT District Two CTSP continues the educational countermeasure series based on proven measures of effectiveness by the FHWA. These pieces outline countermeasures to improve safety for people traveling by foot, wheelchair, or bicycle.
Click on the five educational Pedestrian/Bicyclist Countermeasures cards below to download a copy. They may be printed or shared digitally through email or social media with our Traffic Safety Teams, communities, and agencies.
Many of the serious and fatal injuries to pedestrians and bicyclists occur during dark or dusk hours. They also occur outside of marked crosswalks or bicycle lanes. Motorist speed is one of the major factors that can mean the difference between a minor injury and a serious injury or fatality. The traffic safety strategies and treatments of roadway markings, configurations and traffic lights reduce serious injury and fatal crashes. This happens by slowing traffic, allowing more space and safe areas for walkers and cyclists.
Click here for a PDF document of these pedestrian/bicyclist countermeasures cards used in Northeast Florida, provided by the FDOT District Two CTSP.
Traffic Safety Countermeasures that Work in Reducing Pedestrian-Vehicle Crashes:
1. Walkways, shared use paths, and sidewalks improve safety and mobility.
Pedestrian walkways are pathways for use by people traveling by foot or using a wheelchair that are separated from motor vehicle traffic by a space, barrier, or curb and gutter. Northeast Florida integrates and maintains accessible walkways, shared use paths, sidewalks, and roadway shoulders into the transportation system in both urban and rural areas, providing safer spaces for pedestrians to walk.
2. Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPIs) give pedestrians a head start.
LPIs allow pedestrians to enter an intersection a few seconds before vehicles get a green light or have priority to turn. Benefits of LPIs include increased visibility of crossing pedestrians, reduced conflicts between pedestrians and vehicles, more likelihood of motorists yielding to pedestrians, and better safety for pedestrians who may be slower to start into the intersection.
3. Pedestrian crossing islands and medians reduce pedestrian crashes.
Raised medians and pedestrian crossing islands separate motorized and non-motorized road users. To safely cross a roadway, pedestrians need to estimate vehicle speeds, adjust their walking speed, determine gaps in traffic, and predict vehicle paths. Pavement markings, raised medians, or islands help improve pedestrian safety by allowing walkers to cross one direction of traffic at a time. This proven pedestrian safety countermeasure is used in Northeast Florida in curbed sections of urban and suburban multi-lane roadways.
4. Pedestrian Hybrid Beacons (PHBs) assist with safe crossing.
PHBs help pedestrians safely cross busy or higher-speed roadways at midblock crossings and uncontrolled intersections, where a majority of pedestrian fatalities occur. A PHB lets motorists proceed when a pedestrian has cleared the travel lane. For more information and details about PHBs, please visit: trafficsafetyteam.org/pedestrian-hybrid-beacon.
5. Roadway reconfigurations improve safety for all road users.
A “road diet” typically reconfigures a four-lane undivided road into a three-lane road with a center left-turn lane and two through lanes. This can reduce rear-end, left-turn, and right-angle crashes. It also allows for the installation of pedestrian refuge islands, bicycle lanes, on-street parking, or transit stops. Road diets help calm traffic and provide better mobility and provide access that accommodates the needs of pedestrians with fewer lanes to cross and more space for cyclists.