UW Crash Study Focuses on Ways to Make Roads Safer

The University of Wisconsin has released the results of a crash study in an effort to make Wisconsin roads safer for all who travel on them. The author of the study focused on severe or fatal crashes involving bicycles, pedestrians, or both. Given the fact that statewide traffic deaths increased in 2015 for all categories of individuals, including drivers, motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians, it is clear that the need for the study is substantial.

The study showed that multi-lane roads in larger urban areas in Wisconsin are a more common location for these types of crashes. Accidents involving bicyclists and pedestrians are more likely to occur on four-lane roads than on two-land roads. Higher speed limits result in more severe injuries.  Intoxication of drivers and failing to yield to pedestrians in crosswalks also cause a significant number of crashes.

What, then, is the answer to reducing these accidents? Researchers believe that there are several relatively simple solutions that would help decrease the number of crashes involving pedestrians or bicyclists, including the following:

  • Providing separated lanes and wide shoulders to accommodate bicyclists
  • Creating curb extensions to limit crossing distance for and increase visibility of pedestrians
  • Enforcing speed limits constantly and consistently
  • Improving lighting and pedestrian and bicyclist visibility at night
  • Reminding bicyclists that they are subject to the same rules as cars
  • Adding more sidewalks

The author of the study, UW-Milwaukee professor Bob Schneider, is now working with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation and the Bicycle Federation of Wisconsin on a statewide campaign to stop traffic fatalities.

With that said, however, there are factors that contribute to pedestrian and bicyclist crashes that cannot be solved by the suggestions for improvements listed above. These factors include intoxication, drug usage, fatigue, and driver distraction.

When a vehicle crash causes serious injuries to you or a loved one, the impact can be devastating. Although some accidents are just that – accidents – others are caused by the negligence of another, such as an inattentive or distracted truck drivers. If you are in this situation, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses. Call Boller & Vaughan today and learn how our Wisconsin personal injury attorneys can advocate on your behalf.