Pedestrian safety: urban, space and health



The Road Safety Week, conducted by the United Nations will take place from May 6-12 2013. The main subject will be pedestrian safety, regarding the resolution adopted in May 2010 which proclaimed the 2011–2020 period as the Decade of Action for Road Safety (with a goal to stabilize and then reduce the forecast level of road traffic fatalities around the world by increasing activities conducted at each level).

Source : http://www.un.org/en/

Close to this initiative, the International Transport Forum, lied to OECD, has published a report about national government’s role to optimize pedestrian mobility.

In this report, expert’s group has concluded than “walking has great potential to contribute to high-level government agendas for more sustainable development and should therefore take a central position in urban transport policies. Ensuring that walking is an attractive alternative and complement to motorized transport is a core response to the challenges of climate change, fossil fuel dependence, pollution, maintaining mobility for an ageing population, health, and managing the explosion in motorization expected in low- and middle-income countries. Because trends established today will determine the future of cities for many decades, action is needed now for the sustainable cities of tomorrow.”

Source : http://www.shutterstock.com/

The 12 main recommandations:

1. Integrate mobility management and urban planning and take better account of the needs of pedestrians from the earliest stages of urban development projects and transport investments.

2. Establish clear administrative responsibilities among relevant government departments at all levels for coordinating walking programs and initiatives.

3. Improve knowledge to adequately inform government policy development in relation to this fundamental aspect of mobility. This requires a standardized methodology for reporting, measuring and monitoring pedestrian mobility and injuries (from traffic crashes and falls). Efforts should also be directed at the development of international comparisons of mobility and safety statistics to agreed definitions.

4. Incorporate public transport services as an integrated part of the development of new urban areas and the regeneration of existing areas, through planning guidance and financial support for public services. This can support a long-term shift towards higher density, mixed-use, walking and transit-oriented urban form and a reduction in urban sprawl.

5. Giving higher priority and more space to non-motorized traffic and public transport in city centers. This includes a number of key actions: providing easy, safe, well-maintained and secure pedestrian access to public transport and to all city center destinations; development of car-free areas; parking policies to discourage over-use of cars in city centers; and regulations to prevent parking on pavements and crossings.

6. Develop national pedestrian planning guidance for local administrations. Plans should be required to give consideration to the impact of projects on pedestrians, and cyclists, as part of project appraisals and environmental impact assessments.

7. Encourage employers to implement a broad range of incentives for employees to include active transport in commuting trips. Government agencies should demonstrate leadership in this area.

8. Adopt a safe system approach for the design of the walking environment so that it is organized in such a way that specific risk groups are not exposed to avoidable risks.

9. Implement traffic-calming policies and generalize 30 km/h zones in city centers, residential areas and other high pedestrian activity areas

10. Encourage the introduction of high-quality education programs in schools and local community centers.

11. Conduct a critical review of current traffic codes to strengthen the legal and financial protection of pedestrians in case of a crash.

12. Develop a research strategy to better understand mobility trends in a changing society.

More information: http://www.oecd.org


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