|M.Sc Student||Reshef Hagai|
|Subject||Comparative Analysis of Pedestrian Safety on Collector|
|Department||Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering||Supervisors||Dr. Viktoriy Gitelmn|
|Professor Shlomo Bekhor|
|Full Thesis text - in Hebrew|
This study investigates whether there is a difference between pedestrian safety problems on urban collector streets with mixed land uses of two different types: two-way divided streets compared to two-way non-divided streets. These types of streets were chosen for the study because they are characterized by high pedestrian activities and high traffic volumes, and are also associated with high pedestrian injury in urban areas.
Previous studies showed that pedestrians are vulnerable in urban environment. This study investigated the factors that contribute to pedestrian injury, in order to understand the impact of various road characteristics on the behavior and safety of pedestrians. After identifying the main factors affecting pedestrian safety, the results of this study may help in finding suitable treatments of road infrastructure or other measures to reduce the risk of pedestrian involvement in accidents.
The study database included urban road segments that were chosen according to the definition of a collector street, with mixed land uses. The final database included 60 street segments, which were divided into two groups for a comparison:
1. Two-way non-divided streets (without median) -29 segments,
2. Two-way divided streets (with median) -31 segments.
For each study segment, total and pedestrian injury numbers were collected for five years. Then, data on infrastructure characteristics, traffic volumes and road user behaviors were collected by video-recording. The infrastructure characteristics included cross-sectional and longitudinal layouts of the road, existing traffic engineering measures, junction characteristics and pedestrian traffic arrangements. Vehicle traffic and pedestrian volumes were counted using video-records and converted into daily estimates. Pedestrian behaviors on sidewalks and conflict occurrences between pedestrians and vehicles on crosswalks, were analyzed from the video-records as well. In addition, vehicle speed measurements were conducted using a radar speed gun.
Statistical analyses were applied to compare between the two types of streets.
Results and Discussion
The accident data analysis indicated that two-way divided streets are safer for both pedestrians and vehicles. At the same time, vehicle speeds and traffic volumes measured on two-way divided streets, were higher than on two-way non-divided streets.
In the analysis of pedestrian behaviors it was found that on two-way non-divided streets pedestrians were less careful in keeping safe crossing rules than on two-way divided streets.
The study concluded that there are two essential factors for the safety of pedestrians: the presence of a median on the street and pedestrians’ behavior at crosswalks.
The study showed that traffic arrangements that separate between opposite vehicle movements may contribute to pedestrian safety. Constructing urban roads that incorporate medians or refuge islands, can decrease the amount of conflicts between pedestrians and vehicles because medians assist pedestrians to cross the road more safely.
It seems that pedestrians tend to cross two-way non-divided streets without following safe crossing rules. This type of behavior endangers pedestrians and increases the risk of accidents.
Education and raising awareness towards this issue, can change unsafe pedestrian behaviors and encourage them to cross the road according to traffic rules so that their risk of accidents will decrease.