Mountaineer Undergraduate Research Review

Document Type



Despite modern vehicles, improved transportation infrastructure, and advanced traffic signals, more than 36,000 Americans die from traffic crashes every year1. With the goal of reducing traffic fatalities to zero, New York City (NYC) adopted Vision Zero (VZ) initiatives in 2014 and has deployed 23 categories of countermeasures, ranging from road improvements to training and community outreach programs2. In this research, trend analysis and hypothesis tests were done on NYC traffic fatality data for three main categories of roadway users: motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians, to evaluate the success of the VZ initiatives. It was found that annual fatalities of both motorist and pedestrian declined significantly after the deployment of VZ initiatives, while fatalities of cyclist were increased significantly. This finding indicates that current VZ efforts in NYC were not effective in improving cyclist safety. A comparative trend analysis was done on the relationship between summonses issued by New York Police Department (NYPD) and traffic fatalities. It was found that law enforcement was ineffective in improving traffic safety. Additional effective countermeasures should be deployed to reduce the frequency and severity of cyclist involved crashes. Recommended potential measures include additional bike lanes in dense urban areas, wider bike lanes, and law enforcement focused on bicycle helmet usage.



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