People walking are often blamed for crashes when roads are designed for driving

A pedestrian’s location at the time of a crash often determines who (whether driver and pedestrian) is found at fault, says a new study. Even with a lack of pedestrian infrastructure nearby, pedestrians who cross high-speed arterial roads with bus stops are more likely to be blamed.

Researchers at Ohio State University analyzed crash data from four high-crash neighborhoods in Columbus, Ohio, to identify the key factors determining whether pedestrians or drivers are found at fault during crashes. The percentage of pedestrian blame changed based on the built environment of the neighborhood. Drivers were blamed more downtown, where crosswalks and pedestrian-friendly street designs are more prevalent. In these areas, three out of four crashes were found to be driver related.

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