The risk of pedestrian injury and fatality in collisions with motor vehicles, a social ecological study of state routes and city streets in King County, Washington

Anne Vernez Moudon, Lin Lin, Junfeng Jiao, Philip Hurvitz, Paula Reeves

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

161 Citations (Scopus)


This study examined the correlates of injury severity using police records of pedestrian-motor-vehicle collisions on state routes and city streets in King County, Washington. Levels of influence on collision outcome considered (1) the characteristics of individual pedestrians and drivers and their actions; (2) the road environment; and (3) the neighborhood environment. Binary logistic regressions served to estimate the risk of a pedestrian being severely injured or dying versus suffering minor or no injury. Significant individual-level influences on injury severity were confirmed for both types of roads: pedestrians being older or younger; the vehicle moving straight on the roadway. New variables associated with increased risk of severe injury or death included: having more than two pedestrians involved in a collision; and on city streets, the driver being inebriated. Road intersection design was significant only in the state route models, with pedestrians crossing at intersections without signals increasing the risk of being injured or dying. Adjusting for pedestrians' and drivers' characteristics and actions, neighborhood medium home values and higher residential densities increased the risk of injury or death. No other road or neighborhood environment variable remained significant, suggesting that pedestrians were not safer in areas with high pedestrian activity.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)11-24
Number of pages14
JournalAccident Analysis and Prevention
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2011
Externally publishedYes


  • City streets
  • Collisions
  • Fatality
  • GIS
  • Injury
  • Pedestrian
  • State routes

Cite this