New York Traffic Study Unearths Trends in Pedestrian, Cyclist Crashes

Posted on April 4, 2013

Recently, researchers and medical professionals with NYU Langone Medical Center attempted to get a better grasp of what types of circumstances typically lead cyclists and pedestrians to be involved in a collision with a motor vehicle.  The Journal of Trauma and Acute Care Surgery features the eye-opening results, the understanding of which could improve safety on the West Coast as well.

By studying over 1,400 pedestrian or cyclist patients who were injured in a crash over the course of two and a half years, researchers noticed certain trends.  For one thing, the presence of a crosswalk and walk signal did not equate to safe conditions.  A whopping 44% of the pedestrians injured received those injuries when they crossed the street in the crosswalk after the walk signal told them it was the right time to do so.

This suggests that attentiveness is perhaps the most important factor in avoiding an injury, something somewhat seconded by the fact that distraction in the form of electronic devices accounted for 8% of collisions.

Also eye-opening:  under 33% of those cyclists analyzed had been utilizing a helmet when they were hit.  This is despite the fact that such protective devices can go a long way toward protecting riders.

Taxis also proved to be a scourge.  25% of pedestrians were struck by such a vehicle, a number that jumped to 40% among cyclists.

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