Evaluation of Sustained Enforcement, Education, and Engineering Measures on Pedestrian Crossings

Principal Investigator(s):

Nichole Morris, Director, Human Factors Safety Lab, Mechanical Engineering


Project summary:

Pedestrian fatalities and injuries represent a growing percentage of all traffic fatalities and injuries. This project used a multifaceted approach to improving compliance to the Minnesota crosswalk law in Saint Paul, Minnesota, including: (1) education, (2) measurement, (3) enforcement efforts, (4) social norming, and (5) engineering treatment. The multifaceted activities were planned and implemented in Saint Paul with city traffic engineers and enforcement officers. The study initially observed 32 percent yielding and frequent multiple threat passing at 16 unsignalized, marked crosswalks throughout Saint Paul, measured through staged pedestrian crossings by the research team. A program was implemented that used a phased treatment approach of disseminating educational materials, conducting four waves of high visibility enforcement (HVE), displaying yielding averages on feedback signs across the city, and introducing low-cost engineering solutions through in-street signs. The results demonstrated a significant impact from education, HVE, and engineering to increase yielding to as high as 78 percent at enforcement sites and 61 percent at untreated sites. Multiple threat passing was also reduced. Overall, the study demonstrated that the HVE program and combined low-cost engineering were effective at improving compliance to the crosswalk law.

Project details:

  • Project number: 2018010
  • Start date: 06/2017
  • Project status: Completed
  • Research area: Transportation Safety and Traffic Flow
  • Topics: Pedestrian, Safety, Traffic operations