Inside South Carolina Department of Transportation

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Bicycle & Pedestrian Facilities

Safety: Figures released by NHTSA in 2012 show South Carolina's bicycle and pedestrian death rates again among the worst in the nation for 2010.


Pedestrians: Remaining in the "top five" states nationally in terms of the per capita deaths to pedestrians, South Carolina went from 5th place to 4th place (http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811625.pdf). This is based on 90 fatalities documented during 2010, an increase of 1 death over 2009 after three straight years of decline in the total number of pedestrian fatalities on our streets and highways. Yet in 2010 an increase in state population allowed South Carolina's pedestrian death rate still to manage its fourth year of decline (from 1.95 to 1.94) during a year in which the overall U.S. rate actually rose from 1.33 to 1.38. Historically S.C.'s pedestrian death rate has been worse than that of the nation as a whole.

Cyclists: The year 2010 recorded 14 cyclist fatalities caused by crashes with motor vehicles (http://www-nrd.nhtsa.dot.gov/Pubs/811386.pdf). This is a result of 3 more persons being killed in 2010 than in 2009. Consequently South Carolina's cyclist fatality rate rose from 2.41 fatalities per million population in 2009 to 3.02 in 2010. In comparison with other states South Carolina experienced the 4th highest state cyclist fatality rate in the nation in 2010, returning to the "top ten" after escaping that distinction at number 11 for 2009. The state's cycling fatality rate was over 50% higher than the U.S. rate of 2.00 in 2010.

Air Quality: Improving our air quality involves identifying and managing sources of air pollution. One of the major sources of certain types of air pollution is the motor vehicle. As South Carolina continues to increase in population and in numbers of vehicles on our roads, we need to look for ways to reduce the number of vehicle miles traveled. Motor vehicles generally have the highest level of pollution output per mile in the first few miles of operation-those miles before the engine has warmed up. That is why it is important to be able to use walking or cycling as substitute modes for more and more short trips.

Public Health: Walking and cycling are modes of transportation you can use to lose weight, increase your cardiovascular health and stay fit.

Energy: The South Carolina Energy Office offers information on Energy conservation.

Economy: Facilities that support the recreational use of cycling by tourists can offer economic benefits to our citizens.

Related Links:
South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (Bureau of Air Quality)
South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (Eat Smart Move More SC)
USC Arnold School of Public Health Prevention Research Center
The South Carolina Energy Office

Related Documents:
South Carolina Department of Public Safety Crash Data (PDF 1.46 Mb)
NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts 2008 - Pedestrians (PDF 1.21 Mb)
NHTSA Traffic Safety Facts 2008 - Bicyclists and Other Cyclists (PDF 542 Kb)
NCDOT report 'Pathways to Prosperity - the Economic Impact of Investments in Bicycle Facilities (PDF 1.16 Mb)

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