Pedestrians are some of the most vulnerable road users as they are not protected by safety devices, and must also share the road with vehicles traveling at dangerous speeds, particularly during road crossings. In 2011, the state of Oregon changed their traffic laws to be more accommodating to pedestrians by giving right of way to pedestrians using a crosswalk, regardless if whether the crosswalk is marked or unmarked. This paper estimates a panel logit model to evaluate the efficacy of the law in preventing pedestrian fatalities. Pedestrian fatalities are shown to decrease over time, with smaller likelihood of a fatality outcome in the years following the change in pedestrian crossing laws. To the authors’ knowledge, it is the first time panel logit models have been used in evaluating pedestrian safety. Results indicate that panel logit models are an alternative to using Box-Tiao intervention models to analyze the long term effects of policy changes, as they allow for the consideration of crash exposure factors as well as temporal effects.
Pedestrians, panel logit, traffic laws, crosswalk
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