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Reckless driving, deadlier than terror

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: It amazes me that there is no observable difference between a terrorist attack and just an accident but there is a whole world of difference on the reaction to either event. A car crashes into a government building as a terrorist attack and all government buildings get cement barricades to protect that space. A car crashes into pedestrians on the sidewalk and the reaction is ¯\_(ツ)_/¯.

So a terrorists has no respect for life, does someone who drinks and drives? Text and drives? Speeds and drives? So we end up with a situation where nothing is done to prevent 30,000 traffic deaths but a few terrorists attacks steps are taken so it can't happen again.]

The article that got me on this tangent: http://www.nydailynews.com/opinion/reckless-driving-deadlier-terror-article-1.3177621


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Pedestrian-shaming campaigns have got to stop

Biking ElsewhereBY ALISSA WALKER, Curbed

...
A campaign that launched today is the newest misguided attempt to prevent traffic deaths by shaming pedestrians—not by addressing the root causes of our country’s frightening epidemic: too many drivers using increasingly inadequate infrastructure.
...

https://www.curbed.com/platform/amp/2016/10/28/13455962/pedestrian-shaming-streets-safety-campaigns
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EVERYONE KNOWS WE HAVE A TRAFFIC PROBLEM

Biking ElsewhereBY DANIEL HERRIGES, Strong Towns

...
This dynamic should be familiar. If you've waded into local politics around growth and development almost anywhere, "traffic" is a drum that citizen activists love to beat. It makes sense: traffic is one of the most visible aspects of quality of life that local government is in a position to affect for better or worse. It matters.

So let's talk about traffic. It's a truism that people in every city believe they have a traffic problem (just like everyone believes they don't have enough parking). But for all the talk of traffic problems down here, I've heard comparatively few viable solutions, and I suspect part of that is because we so rarely bother to really define the problem.
...

https://www.strongtowns.org/journal/2017/3/16/everyone-knows-we-have-a-traffic-problem

[B' Spokes: A lot of good points in here, amazing what can be gleaned from just defining the problem. ]

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MI DOT GATEWAY PEDESTRIAN TREATMENT GUIDE

Biking Elsewhere-> MI DOT released its "User Guide for R1-6 Gateway Treatment for Pedestrian Crossings." The R1-6 Gateway Treatment consists of In-Street Pedestrians signs used across an entire roadway – lane lines, center lines, bike lane lines, medians, etc. to highlight a marked pedestrian crosswalk. The perceived narrowing of the road is one factor influencing the treatments efficacy. Research data show that when appropriately used, the gateway treatment increases driver yielding compliance from 0-10% to 60-100%. Data also show that driving speeds are reduced around these devices, regardless of pedestrian presence. These results have been sustained over time and suggestions are included in the guide to increase survivability for maintenance. http://bit.ly/2oLVjfb

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.

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THE INVENTION OF JAYWALKING

Biking Elsewhere-> A CityLab article presents the forgotten history of how the auto industry won the right of way for cars. Browse through New York Times accounts of pedestrians dying after being struck by automobiles prior to 1930, and you’ll see that in nearly every case, the driver is charged with something like "technical manslaughter." And it wasn’t just New York. Across the country, drivers were held criminally responsible when they killed or injured people with their vehicles. In the automobile’s earliest years, the principles of common law applied to crashes. In the case of a collision, the larger, heavier vehicle was deemed to be at fault. The responsibility for crashes always lay with the driver. The auto industry lobbied to change the law, promoting the adoption of traffic statutes to supplant common law. The statutes were designed to restrict pedestrian use of the street and give primacy to cars. The idea of "jaywalking" – a concept that had not really existed prior to 1920 – was enshrined in law. http://bit.ly/2pz6gUr

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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NTSB: Speed Kills, and We’re Not Doing Enough to Stop It

Biking Elsewhere[B' Spokes: My prominent thought after reading this is why not have have a program that after your second speeding ticket you are required to have a governor on your our car, much like the Ignition Interlock program for DUI, we have the technology but no one is pushing it.]

By Stephen Miller, Streets Blog

More than 112,500 people lost their lives in speed-related crashes from 2005 to 2014, accounting for 31 percent of all traffic deaths in America over that period. In a draft report released earlier this week, the National Transportation Safety Board says excessive speed is a deadly problem in our nation’s transportation system — one that federal and state officials aren’t doing enough to address.
...

The NTSB’s 19 recommendations should be a wake-up call, especially to the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), state legislatures, and transportation and police departments across the country.
...

The way motorists think about speed also needs to change. Using GPS or sign-reading sensors, cars can now alert drivers when they’re speeding, and even prevent motorists from exceeding the limit. The NTSB said the availability of these features should be included in car safety ratings, but didn’t endorse them as mandatory equipment.
...

There’s also a need for better speed camera technology, the NTSB says. The United States relies on fixed site cameras, but “point-to-point” enforcement, which tracks vehicle speed over a greater distance, has proven effective in Europe, Australia, and New Zealand and should be used and evaluated here.
...

“For too long, proven policies to reduce speeding in our communities have been held hostage by outdated standards, costing more than 10,000 lives lost each year,” said Leah Shahum, director of the Vision Zero Network. “We urge every state and community to adopt NTSB’s recommendations to stem the tide of preventable suffering on our roadways.”
...

http://usa.streetsblog.org/2017/07/27/ntsb-speed-kills-and-were-not-doing-enough-to-stop-it/
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How fire chiefs and traffic engineers make places less safe

Biking in BaltimoreBy STEVE MOUZON , CNU

[B' Spokes: Mostly about the fire department's effort in Florida to remove street trees but still he makes a great point:]

...
On the divide between traffic safety and fire safety, consider this: if you only count deaths by automobile of people walking and people cycling, that’s 19.4 per million in the US, which is almost 50% more than the egregious 12.4 per million deaths by fire in the US each year. To be really blunt, if every fire department in the US closed up shop and dedicated themselves to reducing deaths of people walking and biking to zero, 2,100 lives would be saved in the US every year. Over my lifetime of 57 years, 119,700 people we’ve buried or cremated would have lived instead, with not a single fire station open in the US. To be clear, I’m not advocating for that. What I am advocating for is for fire chiefs and fire marshals to open their eyes and realize that when they do something in the interest of fire safety that damages walking and biking safety, they’re likely killing people!
...

https://www.cnu.org/publicsquare/2017/03/27/how-fire-chiefs-and-traffic-engineers-make-places-less-safe
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GET READY FOR PARK(ING) DAY SEPTEMBER 15

Health & Environment-> Spaces to Places reminds readers that the third Friday in September is PARK(ing) Day, an annual worldwide event where artists, designers and citizens transform metered parking spots into temporary public parks, sometimes referred to as parklets. (See http://bit.ly/1BY9Jx1 to download the free The PARK(ing) Day Manual.) The mission of PARK(ing) Day is to call attention to the need for more urban open space, to generate critical debate around how public space is created and allocated, and to improve the quality of urban human habitat. Check out the article to see examples of parklets and read the steps to create a PARK(ing) Day parklet. http://bit.ly/2v7jNWv

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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BRITISH PUBLIC HEALTH TOUTS 20 MPH LIMIT TO IMPROVE AIR QUALITY

Health & Environment-> The European Cyclists’ Federation reports the British National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, through its most recent publication, supports reducing urban speeds for better air quality. (Air Pollution: Outdoor Air Quality and Health: http://bit.ly/2vZMml5) Speed limits of 20 mph are increasingly acknowledged as an affordable tool to address air quality problems. What is interesting is the call for not using physical speed reduction measures. http://bit.ly/2vZN8yr

from CenterLines, the e-newsletter of the National Center for Bicycling & Walking.
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Speeding Plays an Even Bigger Role in Traffic Deaths Than We Thought, Say Feds

Biking ElsewhereThe National Transportation Safety Board wants governments to crack down on speeding, which claims as many traffic deaths as drunk driving. But the hard question is: How?

BY DANIEL C. VOCK, Governing

A new study out of Washington is rarely a cause for celebration, but many traffic safety groups are excited about a forthcoming report that highlights the big role speeding plays in traffic deaths.

The study comes from the National Transportation Safety Board, an agency best known for its investigations of deadly plane crashes and train derailments. The NTSB has also been a force behind safety innovations, like air bags in cars and graduated driver’s licenses for teen drivers.

Researchers have actually underestimated how often speed is a factor in fatal crashes, according to a summary of the report, which will be released in full in coming weeks. That’s significant, considering that speed is already one of the most widely reported causes of deadly crashes. In 2015, for example, it was identified as a factor in roughly as many traffic deaths (9,557) as alcohol (9,306) or people not wearing seat belts (9,874).

But the NTSB went further, by urging traffic engineers to rethink how they set speed limits and for states and localities to use speed cameras more often. NTSB wants law enforcement agencies to mount a national anti-speeding campaign, akin to “Click It or Ticket” for seatbelt use. The agency also wants carmakers to install features to alert drivers when they’re going over the speed limit and maybe even slow them down automatically.
...

http://www.governing.com/topics/transportation-infrastructure/gov-speeding-traffic-deaths-ntsb-study.html
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