• Senator Coons and Representative Carney Will Co-Sponsor the Bicycle and Pedestrian Road Safety Act

    by  • March 7, 2014 • Cool People, Legislation and Policy, Safety • 1 Comment

    coons_carney

    Senator Chris Coons and Representative John Carney

    Washington, DC – Senator Chris Coons and Representative John Carney will be co-sponsors of the “Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act” in the United States Congress.

    Last year, overall traffic fatalities fell in Delaware to their lowest level in 50 years. But this decline has been entirely driven by a decline in motor vehicle occupant fatalities. Pedestrian and cyclist fatalities have not fallen. In fact, over a quarter of traffic fatalities in Delaware are now pedestrians. Over 25%!

    quarter

    The Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety (BPS) Act aims to reduce pedestrian and cyclist fatalities by creating a “performance measure” for nonmotorized transportation safety for the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP). HSIP is a $2.4 billion annual program to improve road safety in the United States. It is the only federal program focused entirely on road safety.

    The BPS Act is not a 6,000 page bill. In fact, it’s not even a 6 page bill. It’s a 6 word bill (perhaps one of the shortest bills ever introduced in the United States Congress!). All it would do is insert these 6 words (shown in red below) to the section of the United States Code governing the federal Highway Safety Improvement Program (“HSIP”).

    USC Title 23 Section §150. National goals and performance management measures
    (c) Establishment of Performance Measures
    (4) Highway safety improvement program.-For the purpose of carrying out section 148, the Secretary shall establish measures for States to use to assess
    (A) serious injuries and fatalities per vehicle mile traveled;
    (B) the number of serious injuries and fatalities for both motorized and nonmotorized transportation.

    Why are these 6 words important?

    The 6 words are important because, up to now, the Highway Safety Improvement Program has not been used to improve either pedestrian or cyclist safety. Look at these Delaware numbers for the program:

    Source: FHWA Fiscal Management Information System

    Source: FHWA Fiscal Management Information System

    The Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act before Congress aims to change this. By making “nonmotorized transportation” into a performance measure for the program, it will create a measure by which departments of transportation can start to hold themselves accountable for pedestrian and cyclist safety. It creates a number to measure and that’s critical because without a number to measure, how can DOT leaders be expected to manage?

    We thank Senators Coons and Representative Carney for their interest in pedestrian and cyclist safety, for their leadership and for their critical support for the Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act. We are grateful for their service to Delaware.

    Please add your own thanks to both Senator Coons and Representative Carney!

    Thank Senator Coons for being a co-sponsor of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act HERE.

    Thank Representative Carney for being a co-sponsor of the Bicycle and Pedestrian Safety Act HERE.

     

     

      James Wilson is the executive director of Bike Delaware.

     

     

     

     

    RELATED: 

    • House Majority Leader Will Lead Delaware’s Cycling Delegation to Washington DC

    • Road Safety in Delaware: How We Can Reduce the Number of Dead Pedestrians (Part 1)

    Why Cyclists Get Hit

    Stop SMIDSY

    • News Journal Front Page: “Pedestrians at high risk”

    • Traffic Fatalities Are Declining in Delaware…Except for Pedestrians and Bicyclists

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    One Response to Senator Coons and Representative Carney Will Co-Sponsor the Bicycle and Pedestrian Road Safety Act

    1. April 16, 2014 at 10:01 am

      I am extremely grateful to see individuals creating more awareness for cyclists safety on the road. I was a victim. I was knocked over and left on the side of the road. It is a life changing ordeal. Leaving you scarred not just physically but mentally as well. I’ve even set up campains. http://igg.me/at/injured-cyclist/x/6778639 and my twitter @AidMyRecovery. Sadly poeple have the – just read and turn the page kind of attitude towards it. One thing I can say. SA champ, Burry Stander, who passed away last year by being knocked over, his family is goIng full force to try and create more awareness. I end this with the motto we have here in South Africa. 1.5 meters!

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