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Federal Highway Administration Research and Technology
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Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-06-130
Date: April 2007
Pedestrian and Bicyclist Intersection Safety Indices
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CHAPTER 1. OVERVIEW
What are the Pedestrian and Bicycle Intersection Safety Indices?
The Pedestrian and Bicycle Intersection Safety Indices (Ped ISI and Bike ISI) are a set of models that enable users to identify intersection crossings and intersection approach legs that should be the greatest priority for undergoing pedestrian and bicycle safety improvements. Using observable characteristics of an intersection crossing or approach leg, the tool produces a safety index score, with higher scores indicating a greater priority for an indepth safety assessment. Each leg of an intersection may have different characteristics affecting pedestrian or bicyclist safety; therefore the tools are intended to provide an evaluation of the safety of an individual crossing (Ped ISI) or approach leg (Bike ISI) rather than evaluating the intersection as a whole. A practitioner can use the tool to develop a prioritization scheme for a group of pedestrian crossings or bicyclist approaches. This method enables the practitioner to prioritize and proactively address sites that are the most likely to be a safety concern for pedestrians or bicyclists.
Why are Ped ISI and Bike ISI needed?
The need to address pedestrian and bicyclist safety is ever present. National crash statistics for 2004 show that 4,641 pedestrians and 725 pedalcyclists were killed in crashes, accounting for approximately 13 percent of all traffic fatalities in the United States.(1) Most of these crashes occur at intersections. Many States and municipalities have pedestrian and bicycle safety programs to identify and address high crash locations. Although these safety programs can treat pedestrian or bicyclist hazards as they are identified, it would be preferable to use a proactive method of prioritizing which intersections should be examined first to ensure that potentially risky locations are addressed before they become crash problems.
What are the benefits of Ped ISI and Bike ISI?
Ped ISI and Bike ISI proactively prioritize pedestrian crossings and bicyclist approaches with respect to safety. They also provide forward–looking State and local planning agencies with a safety rating tool for proposed intersections. Each tool uses observable and easy–to–gather data.
Where can Ped ISI and Bike ISI be used?
Ped ISI and Bike ISI were developed at urban and suburban intersections with the following characteristics:
Ped ISI and Bike ISI are used most appropriately at intersections that meet the above ranges. Safety index values produced for intersections with characteristics outside these ranges should be used only with the understanding that the models were not developed using intersections of that type.
Steps for using the Ped ISI and Bike ISI