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Safety 2015, 1(1), 16-27; doi:10.3390/safety1010016

An Exploration into Younger and Older Pedestrians’ Risky Behaviours at Train Level Crossings

1
Centre for Accident and Road Safety–Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, 130 Victoria Park Road, Kelvin Grove, ALD 4059, Australia
2
Centre for Accident and Road Safety—Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Kelvin Grove, 4059, Australia
3
Centre for Accident and Road Safety—Queensland, Queensland University of Technology, Kelvin Grove, 4059, Australia
These authors contributed equally to this work.
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Raphael Grzebieta
Received: 13 May 2015 / Accepted: 10 August 2015 / Published: 18 August 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [220 KB, uploaded 18 August 2015]

Abstract

Background: Younger and older pedestrians are both overrepresented in train-pedestrian injury and fatality collision databases. However, scant research has attempted to determine the factors that influence level crossing behaviours for these high risk groups. Method: Five focus groups were undertaken with a total of 27 younger and 17 older pedestrian level crossing users (N = 44). Due to the lack of research in the area, a focus group methodology was implemented to gain a deeper exploratory understanding into the sample’s decision making processes through a pilot study. The three main areas of enquiry were identifying the: (a) primary reasons for unsafe behaviour; (b) factors that deter this behaviour and (c) proposed interventions to improve pedestrian safety at level crossings in the future. Results: Common themes to emerge from both groups regarding the origins of unsafe behaviours were: running late and a fatalistic perspective that some accidents are inevitable. However, younger pedestrians were more likely to report motivators to be: (a) non-perception of danger; (b) impulsive risk taking; and (c) inattention. In contrast, older pedestrians reported their decisions to cross are influenced by mobility issues and sensory salience. Conclusion: The findings indicate that a range of factors influence pedestrian crossing behaviours. This paper will further outline the major findings of the research in regards to intervention development and future research direction. View Full-Text
Keywords: pedestrian behaviour; train level crossings; rule violations; qualitative research pedestrian behaviour; train level crossings; rule violations; qualitative research
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Freeman, J.; McMaster, M.; Rakotonirainy, A. An Exploration into Younger and Older Pedestrians’ Risky Behaviours at Train Level Crossings. Safety 2015, 1, 16-27.

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