Safety & Active Transportation
KBT has merged the Public Transit and Safety Committees to continue as Public Transit, Access & Safety Committee
Kentuckians for Better Transportation is the voice to educate and advocate for a safe and sustainable multi-modal transportation network that provides mobility across the Commonwealth for economic growth and improved quality of life.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has released its early estimate of traffic fatalities for 2021. NHTSA projects that an estimated 42,915 people died in motor vehicle traffic crashes last year, a 10.5% increase from the 38,824 fatalities in 2020. The projection is the highest number of fatalities since 2005 and the largest annual percentage increase in the Fatality Analysis Reporting System’s history. Behind each of these numbers is a life tragically lost, and a family left behind. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law places a strong emphasis on improving safety and includes the new Safe Streets and Roads for All program. The program, the first of its kind, invests up to $6 billion over five years to fund local efforts to reduce roadway crashes and fatalities. The Bipartisan Infrastructure Law now being implemented also advances Complete Streets policies and standards; requires updates to the Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, which defines speeds, lane markings, traffic lights and more on most roads in the country; and sharply increases funding for the Highway Safety Improvement Program, which helps states adopt data-driven approaches to making roads safer.
There are widely supported methods to this approach for inclusive public access and safety in our transportation network, specifically putting the person, rather than a vehicle as the focused perspective. One such method that thoroughly captures this approach is Complete Streets.
“Complete Streets are streets designed and operated to enable safe use and support mobility for all users. Those include people of all ages and abilities, regardless of whether they are travelling as drivers, pedestrians, bicyclists, or public transportation riders. The concept of Complete Streets encompasses many approaches to planning, designing, and operating roadways and rights of way with all users in mind to make the transportation network safer and more efficient. Complete Street policies are set at the state, regional, and local levels and are frequently supported by roadway design guidelines.”
Active Transportation and Micromobility
Active transportation is (mostly) human-powered mobility, such as biking or walking. Active transportation directly replaces motor vehicle miles traveled. In doing so this mode is effective at conserving fuel, , reducing vehicle emissions, bridging the first- and last-mile gap, and improving individual and public health. Bicycles, electric bikes, wheelchairs, scooters, and even walking are all considered active transportation.
Micromobility refers to fleets of fully or partially human-powered vehicles including manual bikes, e-bikes, and e-scooters that individuals can access for short-term use. Micromobility options fill a gap in needs for single segment or one-way trips, allowing users to avoid the costs of purchasing, maintaining, and storing a bike. These solutions also present another way to close first-and-last-mile gaps by providing a more affordable, accessible, and equitable way for individuals to get to and from public transit options.