U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx at the 2014 Pro Walk, Pro Bike, Pro Place Conference here in Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh joins 86 other communities to take action to improve safety for people on foot and bike over the next year
Earlier this year, U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx launched his Mayor’s Challenge for Safer People, Safer Streets. As deaths and serious injuries of people on foot and on bike have risen in recent years, he is “challenging mayors and local elected officials to take significant action to improve safety for bicyclists and pedestrians of all ages and abilities over the next year.”
Overall, highway deaths have been declining in recent years — 25 percent over the last decade.
In the Secretary’s own words:
Unfortunately pedestrian and bicyclist fatalities have not seen similar safety gains and now represent nearly 17 percent of total fatalities. In 2013, bicyclists were the only group to show an increase in total deaths. While it’s true that cities around the country are seeing more people walking and biking to get where they need to go, we cannot accept an increase in deaths and injuries among people choosing those transportation options. The Mayors’ Challenge for Safer People and Safer Streets seeks better protection of the most vulnerable users of our roadways based on the latest pedestrian and bicyclist safety innovations.
Here in Pittsburgh, approximately 10% of traffic fatalities are pedestrians. Communities like Pittsburgh that have signed up to the challenge are expected to spend a year undertaking seven activities to improve safety.
Mayors’ Challenge Activities
- Take a Complete Streets approach
- Identify and address barriers to make streets safe and convenient for all road users, including people of all ages and abilities and those using assistive mobility devices
- Gather and track biking and walking data
- Use designs that are appropriate to the context of the street and its uses
- Take advantage of opportunities to create and complete ped-bike networks through maintenance
- Improve walking and biking safety laws and regulations
- Educate and enforce proper road use behavior by all
The U.S. DOT website goes into further detail on what is expected of each Challenge Activity.
We look forward to partnering with Mayor Peduto on the Challenge over the next year.
Be sure to thank him for signing up!
Introducing the monthly membership! For the equivalent of a cup of coffee a month, your year-round support of our advocacy and programs makes our streets increasingly safer for everyone. You also get to choose from a set of great gifts when you start a monthly investment in better biking and walking in your community. Become a monthly member today!