Effect of Electronic Device Use on Pedestrian Safety

While the issue of distracted driving has brought to the forefront, little is known about the role distraction plays in pedestrian-involved motor vehicle crashes. Over the last decade, there has been tremendous growth in the use of portable electronic devices by both drivers and pedestrians. While National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's National Occupant Protection Use Survey (NHTSA’s NOPUS) survey includes a measure of driver hand-held cell phone use, there is no similar measure for pedestrians. This project meshes the distracted driving initiative with the Administrator’s focus on pedestrian safety to investigate the extent to which electronic devices are used by pedestrians and drivers and the magnitude of the involvement of electronic device use in pedestrian-involved motor vehicle conflicts. The goal of this project is to determine if electronic device use by pedestrians and drivers significantly impacts pedestrian safety. The project entails (1) conducting a literature review of studies that have investigated pedestrian and driver electronic device use; (2) conducting naturalistic observations to quantify portable electronic use by pedestrians and drivers when interacting; and (3) analyzing pedestrian-motor vehicle crash data to quantify the extent to which electronic devices are involved and to determine crash typology.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • See "Effect of electronic device use on pedestrian safety: A literature review" (DOT HS 812 256, April 2016).


  • English


  • Status: Active
  • Contract Numbers:


  • Sponsor Organizations:

    National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

    1200 New Jersey Avenue, SE
    Washington, D.C.  United States  20590
  • Project Managers:

    Johnson, Kristie

  • Performing Organizations:

    VHB Engineering, NC, P.E.

    4000 WestChase Boulevard, Suite 530
    Raleigh, NC  United States  27607
  • Principal Investigators:

    Johnson, Kristie

  • Start Date: 20130930
  • Expected Completion Date: 20180930
  • Actual Completion Date: 0
  • USDOT Program: Behavioral Safety Research
  • Subprogram: Pedestrian Safety

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01632290
  • Record Type: Research project
  • Source Agency: National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
  • Contract Numbers: DTNH2213C00344
  • Files: RiP, USDOT
  • Created Date: Apr 13 2017 4:39PM