Highway Safety Program Guideline No. 14
Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety
(November 2006) | PDF version for print
Each State, in cooperation with its political subdivisions, tribal governments, and other parties as appropriate, should develop and implement a comprehensive highway safety program, reflective of State demographics, to achieve a significant reduction in traffic crashes, fatalities, and injuries on public roads. The highway safety program should include a comprehensive pedestrian and bicycle safety program that promotes safe pedestrian and bicycle practices, educates drivers to share the road safely with other road users, and provides safe facilities for pedestrians and bicyclists through a combination of policy, enforcement, communication, education, incentive, and engineering strategies. This guideline describes the components that a State pedestrian and bicycle safety program should include and the criteria that the program components should meet. Given the multidisciplinary nature of the highway safety problem, implementation of a comprehensive pedestrian and bicycle safety program requires coordination among several State agencies.
I. PROGRAM MANAGEMENT
Each State should have centralized program planning, implementation, and coordination to promote pedestrian and bicycle safety program issues as part of a comprehensive highway safety program. Evaluation should be used to revise existing programs, develop new programs, and determine progress and success of pedestrian and bicycle safety programs. The State Highway Safety Office should:
II. MULTIDISCIPLINARY INVOLVEMENT
Pedestrian and bicyclist safety requires the support and coordinated activity of multidisciplinary agencies, at both the State and local levels. At a minimum, the following communities should be involved:
III. LEGISLATION, REGULATION AND POLICY
Each State should enact and enforce traffic laws and regulations, including laws that contribute to the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists. This includes laws that require the proper use of bicycle helmets and laws that require bicyclists to follow the same rules of the road as motorists. States should develop and enforce appropriate sanctions that compel compliance with laws and regulations. Specific policies should be developed to encourage coordination with appropriate public and private agencies in the development of regulations and laws to promote pedestrian and bicyclist safety.
IV. LAW ENFORCEMENT
Each State should ensure that State and community pedestrian and bicycle programs include a law enforcement component. Each State should strongly emphasize the role played by law enforcement personnel in pedestrian and bicyclist safety. Essential components of that role include:
V. HIGHWAY AND TRAFFIC ENGINEERING
Highway and traffic engineering is a critical element of any motor vehicle crash reduction program, but is especially important for the safe movement of pedestrians and bicyclists. States should utilize national guidelines for constructing safe pedestrian and bicycle facilities in all new transportation projects, and are required to follow all Federal regulations on accessibility.
Each State should ensure that State and community pedestrian and bicycle programs include a highway andtraffic engineering component that is coordinated with enforcement and educational efforts. This engineering component should improve the safety of pedestrians and bicyclists through the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of engineering measures such as:
VI. COMMUNICATION PROGRAM
Each State should ensure that State and community pedestrian and bicycle programs contain a comprehensive communication component to support program and policy efforts. This component should address coordination with traffic engineering and law enforcement efforts, school-based education programs, communication and awareness campaigns, and other focused educational programs such as those for seniors and other identified high-risk populations. The State should enlist the support of a variety of media, including mass media, to improve public awareness of pedestrian and bicyclist crash problems and programs directed at preventing them. Communication programs and materials should be culturally relevant and multilingual as appropriate, and should address issues such as:
VII. OUTREACH PROGRAM
Each State should encourage extensive community involvement in pedestrian and bicycle safety education by involving individuals and organizations outside the traditional highway safety community. Outreach efforts should include a focus on reaching vulnerable road users, such as older pedestrians, young children, and new immigrant populations. States should also incorporate pedestrian and bicycle safety education and skills training into school physical education/health curricula. To encourage community and school involvement, States should:
VIII. DRIVER EDUCATION AND LICENSING
Each State should address pedestrian and bicycle safety in State driver education training, materials and licensing programs in the classroom and behind the wheel, including strategies for motorists and bicyclists on safely sharing the road.
IX. EVALUATION PROGRAM
Both problem identification and evaluation of pedestrian and bicycle crashes require effective record keeping by State and local government representatives. The State should identify the frequency and type of pedestrian and bicycle crashes to inform selection, implementation, and evaluation of appropriate countermeasures. The State should promote effective program evaluation by: