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California’s Streets Dangerous “By Design”: Seniors, Minorities Bear Greatest Burden

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A new report released today by Transportation for America revealed that pedestrians represent a disproportionate number of traffic fatalities in San Francisco, and among those who walk, seniors and minorities face the greatest danger.

“Dangerous By Design,” authored by the national coalition Transportation For America, found that most people killed while walking are on wide, high-speed, high-volume streets. Nationally, over half of the 47,067 pedestrians killed from 2000 to 2009 were on these “arterial” streets.

The county of San Francisco has one of the highest pedestrian fatality rates in the nation—#4 of all counties nationally, #3 of large counties, and #1 in California. More than half of San Francisco’s traffic fatalities are pedestrians. With 220 pedestrian fatalities between 2000 and 2009, San Francisco’s pedestrian fatality rate of 51.9% is far higher than Alameda County’s of 23% or the national 12%.

“Speed kills,” said Elizabeth Stampe, executive director of Walk San Francisco, the city’s pedestrian advocacy group. “Wide, fast streets are deadly. We need to redesign our streets to make them safer and more walkable, and we need dedicated funding to get the designs built.”

“We have no time to lose.”

Read the full press release (PDF) and download the California report (PDF)

See the report online — with interactive maps of pedestrian fatalities: