Considering built environment and spatial correlation in modeling pedestrian injury severity

Carlo G. Prato*, Sigal Kaplan, Alexandre Patrier, Thomas K. Rasmussen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

31 Scopus citations


Objective: This study looks at mitigating and aggravating factors that are associated with the injury severity of pedestrians when they have crashes with another road user and overcomes existing limitations in the literature by focusing attention on the built environment and considering spatial correlation across crashes. Method: Reports for 6,539 pedestrian crashes occurred in Denmark between 2006 and 2015 were merged with geographic information system resources containing detailed information about the built environment and exposure at the crash locations. A linearized spatial logit model estimated the probability of pedestrians sustaining a severe or fatal injury conditional on the occurrence of a crash with another road user. Results: This study confirms previous findings about older pedestrians and intoxicated pedestrians being the most vulnerable road users and crashes with heavy vehicles and in roads with higher speed limits being related to the most severe outcomes. This study provides novel perspectives by showing positive spatial correlations of crashes with the same severity outcomes and emphasizing the role of the built environment in the proximity of the crash. Conclusions: This study emphasizes the need for thinking about traffic calming measures, illumination solutions, road maintenance programs, and speed limit reductions. Moreover, this study emphasizes the role of the built environment, because shopping areas, residential areas, and walking traffic density are positively related to a reduction in pedestrian injury severity. Often, these areas have in common a larger pedestrian mass that is more likely to make other road users more aware and attentive, whereas the same does not seem to apply to areas with lower pedestrian density.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)88-93
Number of pages6
JournalTraffic Injury Prevention
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Pedestrian crashes
  • built environment
  • injury severity models
  • spatial correlation


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