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54 of the total, but these collisions are the most severe and account mation on the effectiveness of corrective actions. This study for at least 50% of all fatalities resulting from LRT collisions provides a starting point by gathering the LRT safety informa- (3). These general findings are supported by the data reviewed tion available into one, easily accessible catalog of information in Table 11 of Chapter 3, which showed that pedestrian colli- about specific LRT safety treatments (Appendix A). sions accounted for 168 (22%) of the 773 collisions (SEPTA Even with excellent data collection processes in place, analy- excluded) in the NTD, but 80% of all fatalities (47 of the 59 sis of LRT collision data will still be limited by the number of fatalities in the years from 2002 to 2007). collisions. LRT collisions are even more statistically rare than Although the comparable numbers for cyclists was very vehicle collisions. LRT data and the information obtained from small, with only 24 total collisions in the 20022007 NTD data, the site visits suggest that a high accident location along an LRT cyclists also appear to be overrepresented in terms of severity: alignment has about one incident per year. This collision fre- they were involved in only 3% of collisions with LRVs, but quency is too low for conducting before-and-after studies, or accounted for 10% of all fatalities. Together, cyclists and pedes- even for identifying problem locations. The site visit agencies trians accounted for nearly 90% of all LRV collision fatalities. all reported using various other measures to determine which Improving pedestrian and bicycle safety is essential. locations may require safety treatment. These "surrogate" Conversely, road vehicles accounted for the majority of col- measures could be used in formal safety studies (before-and- lisions with LRVs, but only a small proportion of the fatalities. after, empirical Bayes, etc.) to determine the effects of specific On the other hand, motor vehicle occupants were involved in safety treatments without needing to wait for a significant 65% (261) of the 404 injuries (Table 11, Chapter 3) in all injury- number of collisions to occur. causing collisions, and almost 48% of all motor vehicleLRV Surrogate measures described by the LRT agencies con- collisions resulted in injuries (261 of 545 motor vehicle colli- sulted by the project team include: sions, as shown in Table 11 of Chapter 3). It is clear that each group of road users has significant risks Operator reports of near misses or other significant safety- associated with LRV collisions, and that the risks vary. It is, related events. however, difficult to hypothesize the root causes for these Risky behavior: events without detailed exposure information and more infor- Metro Transit in Minneapolis conducted a series of mation on the circumstances of each collision reported. More pedestrian violation counts at a downtown station. The data, and more historical data than are currently available counts showed a decrease in the number of pedestrians (many LRT systems are relatively new), are needed to deter- crossing the tracks illegally mid-station as the level of mine the most appropriate and effective combination of safety advertising and signage increased. The data and follow- treatments. up analysis allowed Metro to show that there was still An additional concern in the evaluation of LRT collision significant risk of collision due to pedestrians crossing data is that collisions between non-LRV vehicles and other mid-station, despite the impact of advertising and sign- vehicles or pedestrians that may have been related to the LRT age. This led to the municipal authorities approving facility or operations but did not physically involve an LRV are inter-track fencing at this location. not recorded in the LRT collision data. For example, an inci- Emergency braking: dent in which a pedestrian is hit by a car while walking to or Automated emergency braking records allowed UTA to from a center-of-street transit stop is arguably related to the identify a location where a pedestrian signal was badly LRT, but the incident will not appear in LRT collision data- timed. After the signal timing was changed, the num- bases. A comprehensive analysis of LRT safety will therefore ber of emergency braking incidents was substantially need to include information from local transportation agencies reduced. and police to determine whether any safety implications of Insurance and non-recoverable cost records: LRT operations extend beyond the LRT right-of-way itself. UTA and Metro Transit both have detailed recordkeep- ing for insurance purposes. These records could be used to identify problem locations. UTA has a large number Building a Safety Analysis Toolkit of locations with crossing gates and can identify poten- It is important that all agencies (transit agencies, SSOs, city tial problem locations by the frequency of crossing gate transportation departments, police, and research organiza- replacements. tions) take an active role in adding to the available knowledge. Customer complaints: Good data collection guidelines are needed to increase the SF Muni keeps a detailed database of customer com- quality and quantity of LRT safety data assembled for analysis. plaints. This could be used to identify problem locations, As the database improves, it will become possible to perform or operators with an unusual history that might indicate more rigorous statistical analyses and to develop better infor- a need for additional training.