What is it about?

Older people's pedestrian behaviour. They don't walk as fast as the Department for Transport's guidelines of 1.22m/s at crossings, meaning 88% fail to complete crossing the road before the lights turn back to green for the motorists to proceed.

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Why is it important?

Being a pedestrian is good for our health. It is especially good for older people's health and wellbeing, remaining active and also helps them stay connected to their communities and visit shops and friends and family. Perceived danger (not being able to complete a crossing in time, for example) results in older people losing confidence in walking and they are more likely to stay home and become lonely and isolated.


This adds to the growing literature in the field that we don't make the pedestrian environment safe for older people. It shows almost all older people don't walk at the speeds the government set to give time to older people to cross the road. Even fewer females and those in poorer health walk even slower. Those from higher socio-economic backgrounds walk faster regardless of health!

Dr Charles B Musselwhite
Swansea University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Environment–person interactions enabling walking in later life, Transportation Planning and Technology, November 2014, Taylor & Francis,
DOI: 10.1080/03081060.2014.976983.
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