2019 Research Project

Using integrated data to examine characteristics related to pedestrian and bicyclist injuries

Principal Investigator
Katherine Harmon
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
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Co-Principal Investigator
Laura Sandt 
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
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Fact Sheet: Pedestrian Fatalities among Veterans in North Carolina: 2014-2018

Fact Sheet: Pedestrian Fatalities among Children (0-17 years) in North Carolina: 2009-2018

Project Slide Deck

Research Brief


In 2016, there were 5,987 pedestrian fatalities in the United States (U.S.), or an average of one death every 1.5 hours, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. The number of pedestrian deaths reported in 2016 is part of an alarming trend; since 2010, the number of U.S. pedestrian fatalities has increased by an average of six percent a year. In a previous CSCRS-funded study (Rapid Response 1), the research team identified 40 variables and key themes as possible drivers of the increasing pedestrian fatality trend.  While the original research team investigated some of these variables using data from the Fatality Analysis Reporting System, they were limited in scope by examining only mortality data. Therefore, we will build on their prior work through a population-based linkage study of pedestrian and bicycle crash and emergency department visit data for the state of North Carolina. Using this linked dataset, we will be able to examine the relationship between vehicle, crash, roadway, and person-level factors and their association with injury outcomes. Objectives:

  • Perform a literature scan of epidemiologic studies related to pedestrian and bicycle crash morbidity and mortality.
  • Characterize pedestrian and bicycle crash injuries for the population of North Carolina over a five-year period (October 1, 2010 – September 30, 2015).  
  • Help mentor a UNC School of Medicine medical student (in collaboration with the UNC Department of Neurosurgery) on a pedestrian/bicycle crash project of the student’s choosing. 
  • Identify predictors (person-level factors, crash-level factors, roadway factors, vehicle factors) of injury severity among pedestrians and bicyclists (hospital admission/death, select injury outcomes). 
  • Develop research questions and hypotheses that can be expanded upon. 
  • Inform a national audience of the importance of addressing pedestrian and bicyclist morbidity and mortality through a presentation of project results and implications for future research, intervention, and program and policy development.

Project Details

Project Type: Research
Project Status: Active
Start Date: 6-1-2019
End Date: 7-1-2021
Contract Year: Year 3
Total Funding from CSCRS: $53,007