Thursday, August 22, 2013

BikeWalkLee News-Press Article - Pedestrian Safety Facts

Palm Beach Walking Audit

Feel like taking a walk? How about taking a quiz first? It’s about walking, so perhaps it will inspire you (or at least inform you):

1. People who live in neighborhoods with sidewalks are how much more likely to be active at least 30 minutes a day?
A) 13%
B) 29%
C) 47%
D) 73%
E) Doesn’t have an impact
ANSWER: C, according to a study if neighborhood environments in 11 countries published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

2. What makes pedestrians feel the most threatened about walking?
A) Potential for crime
B) Motorists
C) Uneven surfaces
D) Dogs or other animals
ANSWER: B in all three categories – suburban, urban and rural. A is second for suburban areas, while D comes in second for both rural and urban walkers.

3. Based on the percentage of deaths, what’s the most dangerous time to be walking?
A) 4-8 p.m.
B) 8 p.m.-midnight
C) Midnight-4 a.m.
D) 4-8 a.m.
E) 8 a.m.-noon
F) Noon-4 p.m.
ANSWER: B, when 31% of pedestrian fatalities happen… thanks to a combination of less light and more traffic (and perhaps a few adult beverages?). Second is A (more traffic?), followed by C (more tired people?). Your best bet for safety? It’s 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

4. In the past 10 years, pedestrian fatalities nationwide as a percentage of all traffic fatalities has:
A) Risen
B) Fallen
C) Stayed the same.
ANSWER: A. From 2002 to 2011, pedestrian fatalities have on average fallen in number but increased as a percentage of the total – because the total number of traffic fatalities has dropped even more. Pedestrian fatalities were 14% of total fatalities in 2011 (the last reporting year on file) as compared to 11% in 2002.

5. How often is alcohol involved in pedestrian fatalities?
A) 16%
B) 32%
C) 48%
D) 64%
ANSWER: C when the blood alcohol content (BAC) for both pedestrians and drivers are measured. Interestingly, a high BAC in a pedestrian raises the risk of a pedestrian fatality much more than a driver with a higher BAC

6) Which state had the highest pedestrian fatalities per total population in 2001 (the last reporting year)?
A) Florida
B) South Carolina
C) Arizona
D) Delaware
E) New Mexico
ANSWER: A. Yes, friends, we’re No. 1… unless you throw in Puerto Rico. Who’s lowest? Nebraska and New Hampshire were tied that year.

7) What’s the most dangerous area in the state, when measured using an indicator called the Pedestrian Danger Index?
A) Fort Myers-Cape Coral
B) Miami-Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach
C) Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater
D) Orlando-Kissimmee
E) Jacksonville
ANSWER: D. Sorry, we’re only third out of this list – yes, more dangerous than Miami and Jacksonville (which is the only one of these five areas that comes in under the state average).

Some good news: The Lee County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO), in conjunction with a broad array of stakeholders, is developing a countywide Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Action Plan that aims to address many safety issues. The plan will be ready for implementation this fall.

Now, it’s time for that walk… and let’s be careful out there.

·         Want a look at what local leaders are planning for bike/ped safety?? Check out what's happening on the MPO Bicycle Pedestrian Safety Action Plan:
·         Local pedestrian statistics online at
·         For a considerable collection of pedestrian facts, tips, stories and statistics, check out “Everyone is a Pedestrian” online at

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BikeWalkLee is a community coalition raising public awareness and advocating for complete streets in Lee County—streets that are designed, built, operated and maintained for safe and convenient travel for all users: pedestrians, bicyclists, motorists, and transit riders of all ages and abilities. Information, statistics and background online at

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