News article

How to define and measure pedestrian traffic deaths?

In the article 'How to define and measure pedestrian traffic deaths?' Paul Schepers, Nicola Christie, Bas de Geus and Rob Methorst integrate and expand on two papers on pedestrian travel deaths recently published in the Journal of Transport & Health:

  • The Noland et al. (2017) paper on pedestrian fatality data and the importance of definitions for gathering data
  • Methorst et al. (2017) paper on the definition of ‘traffic crashes’

Methorst et al. (2017) have argued to include pedestrian falls in the public realm or space in the definition of traffic crashes. Even if we use the current definition, which excludes pedestrian injuries without motor vehicle involvement, pedestrian fatalities account for 22% of all traffic deaths worldwide, ranging from 13% in South-East Asia to 22% in the Americas, 26% in Europe and 39% in Africa (WHO, 2015).

Policies to improve pedestrian safety are important to reduce the burden of deaths and injuries, but also to encourage people to participate in active transport and enjoy the sizable health benefits of physical activity (Kelly et al., 2014). This starts with gathering data to understand the problem of pedestrian safety and to inform policies (Noland et al., 2017).

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Transport mode, Pedestrian