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Although people of color make up about one third of the population, they make up 46.1 percent of pedestrian deaths.

New Chicago pedestrian study highlights need for safer streets

As a part of a federally-funded initiative to improve pedestrian safety in Chicago, the Chicago Department of Transportation (CDOT) just finished a comprehensive analysis of pedestrian crashes in the city.

/The study, which examined pedestrian-vehicle crashes from 2005-2009, shows that Chicago sees, on average, about 3,000 pedestrian crashes a year—a number that CDOT says it’s committed to lowering through better engineering, education and enforcement efforts, some of which are already underway.

Here are some other highlights of the study:

  • The majority of pedestrian-vehicle crashes occurred at intersections—often while pedestrians were crossing with the signal.
  • Pedestrians 15- to 18-years-old had the highest rates of vehicle-pedestrian crashes.
  • Among large U.S. cities, Chicago had the fifth-lowest pedestrian fatality rate.
  • Taxis were involved in 28 percent of pedestrian-vehicle crashes in the Loop and 2 percent of crashes outside the Loop.
  • Hit-and-run crashes accounted for 40 percent of fatal crashes in Chicago (versus 20 percent nationally).
  • On average, there were 2 hit-and-run crashes per day resulting in a pedestrian injury or fatality.
  • Thursday is the day of the week when the most vehicle-pedestrian crashes occur. The time of day when most crashes occur is 3-6 p.m.

The city said the study will be used extensively as it continues to develop the Chicago Pedestrian Plan, and pursues new approaches to engineering and works to improve safety education efforts.

Read more about it in today's Chicago Tribune.