SafeTREC Research in the News
More than 57,000 drivers were ticketed for handheld cell phone talking or texting during April’s Distracted Driving Awareness Month, according to the California Office of Traffic Safety (OTS) and the California Highway Patrol (CHP). The citations were written by CHP officers as well as over 250 local law enforcement agencies across the state match the number handed to drivers in last year’s April campaign. The monthly number of cell phone tickets outside of this special high visibility enforcement averages 36,000 violations. Over 3,500 citations were handed out for other types of distracted driving violations.
The Office of Traffic Safety also announced today that the percentage of drivers actively using cell phones at any one time in the state dropped from 10.8 percent in 2012 to 7.4 percent in 2013, nearly returning to the baseline 2011 total of 7.3 percent. The largest drop, 33 percent, was from those holding a cell phone to their ear. The information was contained in the third annual cell phone observational survey conducted in March by OTS through the UC Berkeley Safe Transportation Research and Education Center. The results are likely the low-end indicators due to the short, limited view observation of whether a driver was using a phone, especially for texting.—California Office of Traffic Safety Press Release
Now Appearing in Public Roads, the Newsletter of the Federal Highway Administration:
by Eloisa Raynault and Ed Christopher
Organizations across the country increasingly are looking at the important relationship between the two disciplines
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), an estimated one in three adults and almost 17 percent of young people in this country are obese. Because the transportation system helps shape how communities are designed and operate, it can have a profound influence -- both positive and negative -- on public health...
...The connections between public health and transportation are varied and well documented in peer-reviewed journals in both the public health and transportation arenas. A 2010 CDC study, for example, calculated that the costs of medical care and lost productivity associated with motor vehicle crashes exceeded $99 billion in 2005.
Another study, out of the University of California, Berkeley's Safe Transportation Research & Education Center, found significant health disparities in the area of transportation safety, with African-American, Native American, and Latino drivers facing higher traffic-related risks related to seatbelt use, impaired driving, and pedestrian safety. Further, research has shown that limited access to transportation creates health inequities, as well as decreased access to education, employment, and opportunities for recreational activities for older adults and people with disabilities.—Public Roads May-June 2013
This year's conference has a special focus on environmental design's implications for health policy in addition to the core goal of promoting the value that research has in advancing environmental design and theory.
SafeTREC researchers Kara Macleod, Rebecca Sanders, Ashleigh Griffin and Jill Cooper's paper, "Landscape Design Features Along Two Urban California Corridors" is being presented Friday, May 31, 2:30-3:30. Read the entire EDRA44 Conference Schedule.
Session Title: "Sustainable Transportation on Campus: Translating Research into Action"
Presentation Title: "Pedestrian and Bicycle Safety Strategies for UC Berkeley Campus and Periphery: Recommendations for Implementation"
Abstract: The high level of pedestrian, bicycle, and transit activity on city streets surrounding the UC Berkeley campus creates a dynamic social environment and gives Berkeley much of its charm. But these are also places where pedestrians and bicyclists have been injured or killed in collisions with automobiles. The campus periphery is one of the busiest parts of Alameda County. On a typical class day, it attracts more than 34,000 students and more than 14,000 faculty and staff. About 40% walk, 25% use transit, and 10% bicycle. Read entire abstract in the May 31 e-alert.
Read about this and other SafeTREC projects concerned with campus pedestrian and bicycle safety.