Streetfilms wants leading pedestrian interval, but I want dedicated pedestrian crossings

This may sound like a good idea, but it doesn’t add to pedestrian safety, it just means that the pedestrian will be further into the path of traffic before they are hit. What we need is a dedicated UK style signaling that brings all traffic entering the cross walk to a stop before the walk sign is lit. This means pedestrians and motorists don’t get the mixed signal of a green light but still having to watch for cars or pedestrians.

If you watch the video the cross walk gives the pedestrians 17 seconds, enough time to cross the street before traffic is allowed to flow. If you just had a lead of 3 seconds it wouldn’t make any difference the cars would still push there way into the cross walk.

We are programmed to go on green and sometimes we forget that green doesn’t mean go. It means proceed and watch for pedestrians in the cross walk who have right of way.

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2 Responses to “Streetfilms wants leading pedestrian interval, but I want dedicated pedestrian crossings”

  1. Clarence says:

    Actually it DOES add to pedestrian safety. There is plenty of research available out there to support that. Does add significantly or marginally? THAT might be unclear, but even the worst study we found says it helps improve the rates of crashes by 5%, one says 95%!

    Here are some stats and studies to get you started. There are plenty more studies on the web…

    “Recently we analyzed data and found that the LPI reduced the [crash rate between pedestrians and turning vehicles] by 12%. Relative to control sites, the rate fell 28%:”

    “After leading pedestrian interval signals were installed, conflicts were nearly nonexistent. The odds of a conflict for pedestrians leaving the curb during the beginning of the walk period were reduced by about 95 percent, from 2.8 to 0.2 per 100 pedestrians. The likelihood of a pedestrian yielding to a turning vehicle decreased by about 60 percent.”

    “This intervention was shown to increase pedestrian safety and improve pedestrian comfort and perceived safety levels as well.”

    There’s nothing wrong with Dedicated Pedestrian Crossings and lots of other pedestrian amenities, it all depends on the street geometry and the needs and density of peds. But to say LPIs do nothing for ped safety is disingenuous.

    And I can say from having used crossing in NY that do have it, it is much safer. From time to time you still will have cars trying to butt their way in, but it gives you a chance to get out there in front of them.


  2. Ian says:

    Ok I stand corrected, LPI does may add 5% to 95% safety increase, but if we are going to be changing the lights cycle why can’t we change it to something that prohibits cars from entering a cross walk with walk sign lit?

    We need to move from being car focused to predestination focused in areas where you have a high levels of pedestrians.

    From the first link you sent it says “28% relative decrease in “turning” crashes” I wonder why would have gotten if we had dedicated cross walk time where cars are not given a green light till the cross walk sign has changed to do not walk.

    I appreciate the links