D.C. Has Relatively Safe Streets, But Still Needs Improvements, Report Finds | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

D.C. Has Relatively Safe Streets, But Still Needs Improvements, Report Finds

Play associated audio
A new report concludes that D.C. has some of the safest roads in the nation, but bicyclist and pedestrian fatalities are still rising.
https://www.flickr.com/photos/perspective/5695461983
A new report concludes that D.C. has some of the safest roads in the nation, but bicyclist and pedestrian fatalities are still rising.

With this week's launch of the Street Smart campaign shedding light on the importance of pedestrian and bicycling safety in our region, a new report says Washington has some of the safest streets in the country.

D.C. has the third lowest pedestrian fatality rate in the nation, compared to other large cities: Three fatalities per 10,000 walkers.

That is still too many, says Jeffrey Miller, the head of the Alliance for Biking and Walking. "I doubt there is a single one of the families of any of these pedestrians who have been killed who would say, 'We're doing great,'" he says.

The Alliance's report found more people are walking and biking to work, but as the percentage of fatalities involving motorists is dropping, the percentage for bicyclists and pedestrians is ticking up. In Washington, about 45 percent of all road deaths are pedestrians.

"Everyone should be able to get from where they are to where they're going without at being at risk of death," Miller says. "There are certainly things we can and should be doing as cities and states to improve pedestrian and bicyclist safety."

Miller says many cities, including Washington, have Complete Streets policies, which places pedestrians and bicyclists on equal footing with motorized vehicles when roads are designed. He says that's especially important when you consider how many people who do not own cars are moving into D.C

"We need to look at the most efficient ways to help people move. So Metro and our bus system are fantastic tools. Bicycling and walking are also part of that, where we can move people very efficiently with a limited amount of space," Miller says.

Making the right changes is not only a matter of focus. Money is also an issue. The report says even though 11 percent of all trips are taken by bicycle or foot, only 2 percent of all federal transportation funding goes to bicycling and walking projects.

Bicycling and Walking in the United States, 2014 Benchmarking Report

NPR

Among The Young And Privileged In North Korea

American journalist Suki Kim spent six months teaching English at a North Korean University that serves the sons of the elite. She chronicles her experience in a new book, Without You, There Is No Us.
NPR

From NFL To 'Scandal,' Whole Foods Buys TV Ads To Boost Its Brand

A pioneer in selling organic, sustainable groceries, Whole Foods now finds itself beset by competitors. So it's launching its first national ad blitz to sell socially conscious consumers on its story.
NPR

Concern Over New-Voter Registration In Georgia Ahead Of Election

A lawsuit in Georgia claims more than 40,000 voter registration applications are missing weeks before the November midterm election. Lawyers say they belong to new African-American, Latino and Asian-American voters. But state officials say all applications have been processed.
NPR

In Silicon Valley, Paying For Access To Peace Of Mind

The San Francisco area is the home to the high-tech sector and has a history of embracing Eastern spirituality. Now the two meet in the yoga and meditation classes popular with the local tech workers.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.