Tribune: Half The Kids Hit By Cars Within A Block Of Schools
The Chicago Tribune has been crunching some numbers.
Looking over Illinois Department of Transportation pedestrian crash data between 2007 and 2011, the newspaper calculates almost 1,700 school age children (between 5-18 years old), were struck by vehicles within a block of a school. This number accounts for 10% of all pedestrian crashes.
The Trib says 16,500 pedestrian crashes occurred in this five year period, with about 22% involving children.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel has aggressively pushed a plan to install speed cameras within 1/8th of a mile from a school or park. But interestingly, according to police accident reports, most pedestrian crashes (over 4200 or 25%) were due to failure to yield. Only a tiny fraction of pedestrian crashes, just 117 of the 16,500 that occurred over the past five years, can be attributed to excessive speeds.
Perhaps most curious is the disproportionate number of juvenile pedestrian crashes occurring in poor neighborhoods on the city’s Southside and Westside.
The piece quotes Northwestern University professor Ian Savage, who speculates that people in poor neighborhoods are more inclined to walk than drive to school. Savage goes on to postulate suburban drivers looking to save time traveling into the city, speed through less affluent neighborhoods which, by their very nature, have less congested streets.
Here’s the Tribune’s numbers heavy analysis, “Tribune analysis: About half of the kids hit by cars are near a school, Chicago crash reports show.”