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PennDOT data shows roundabouts reducing fatalities, injuries, and crashes

“Lives are being saved and injuries reduced. The data cannot be denied.”
Credit: WPMT

PENNSYLVANIA, USA — The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) announced today that fatalities, injuries, and crashes decreased overall at 22 roundabouts at 19 locations after they were built, according to department data.

“We continue to be encouraged by the safety advantages of the modern roundabout,” said PennDOT Secretary Yassmin Gramian. “Lives are being saved and injuries reduced. The data cannot be denied.”

PennDOT recently reviewed data for 22 roundabouts on state routes at intersections that were previously stop or signal-controlled. These roundabouts were selected based on having at least three years of crash data available before and after the roundabouts were built. Department data based on police-submitted crash reports spanning the years 2000 through 2019 shows that fatalities at these locations were reduced by 100 percent and the total number of crashes decreased by 24 percent. Additionally:

  • Suspected serious injuries were reduced by 78 percent;
  • Suspected minor injuries were reduced by 62 percent;
  • Possible/unknown severity injuries were reduced by 82 percent; and
  • Property damage-only crashes increased by 20 percent.

In addition to the 22 roundabouts meeting the selection criteria, 34 other roundabouts have been built on state routes and over 40 more are in design.

The roundabouts included in the review are at the following intersections:

  • Route 3070 (Ewing Road) and Business 376 Ramp in Allegheny County, opened in 2011;
  • Beaver County – Route 0068 (Adams Street), Route 1034 (Brighton Avenue) and Route 6018 (Brighton Ave./Rhode Island Ave.), opened in 2011;
  • Bucks County – Route 2043 (Trevose Road) and Somerton Road, opened in 2012;
  • Bucks County – Route 0213 (Bridgetown Pike/Maple Avenue) and Route 2010 (Bridgetown Pike, opened in 2016)
  • Butler County – Route 3024 (Glen Eden Road) and Powell Road and Freshcorn Road, opened in 2015;
  • Chester County – Route 0082 (Doe Run Road) and Unionville Road, opened in 2005;
  • Chester County – Route 0052 (Lenape Road) and S. Wawaset Road and Lenape Unionville Road, opened in 2014;
  • Cumberland County – Route 0034 (Spring Road), Route 1007 (Sunnyside Drive) and Mountain Road, opened in 2014;
  • Dauphin County – Route 0039 (Linglestown Road) and Route 3019 (Mountain Road), opened in 2011;
  • Dauphin County – Route 0322 (Governor Road) and Homestead Lane, opened in 2016
  • Dauphin County – Route 0322 (Governor Road) and Homestead Lane, opened in 2016
  • Delaware County – Route 1023 (N. Newtown Street) and Route 1046 (St. Davids Road), opened in 2008;
  • Delaware County – Route 0320 (Chester Road) and Rutgers Avenue and Fieldhouse Lane, opened in 2014;
  • Erie County – Route 0019 (High Street) and Route 0097, opened in 2014;
  • Luzerne County – I-81 Exit 178 (three roundabouts) - Route 0315 (Airport Road) and Williams Street/Ramp, Route 0315 and Ramps and Terminal Road and Navy Way Road and Williams Street and Ramp, opened in 2015;
  • Montgomery County – Route 0029 (Gravel Pike) and Route 0073 (Big Road), opened in 2009;
  • Washington County – Route 0519 (two connected roundabouts) - Route 0519 and Brownlee Road and Route 0519 and Thompson Eighty Four Road, opened in 2015;
  • York County – Route 0116 (Main Street) and Hanover St. and Roths Church Road, opened in 2007; and
  • York County – Route 0074 (Delta Road) and Bryansville Road, opened in 2008.

Roundabouts are frequently installed to address intersections with safety issues but may also be installed to improve traffic flow as well as other reasons such as traffic calming and to facilitate pedestrian mobility.

Although roundabouts are safer and typically more efficient than traditional signalized intersections, they may not always be the best option due to topography or other reasons, such as property impacts, capacity issues, and proximity to other intersections.

Roundabouts are recognized by the Pennsylvania State Transportation Innovation Council (STIC) as an innovation that has become standard practice within the transportation community.

The Pennsylvania STIC facilitates the rapid implementation of proven, well-researched, and documented state, regional, national, and international technologies, tactics, techniques, and any other innovations that are new to Pennsylvania. The STIC also supports the implementation of the Federal Highway Administration's Every Day Counts (EDC) Initiatives.

To educate Pennsylvanians on how to navigate a roundabout, the department created a video on how to use both single and multi-lane roundabouts whether in a vehicle, on a bicycle, or on foot. The video can be accessed by visiting the roundabout page on www.penndot.gov or by visiting the department’s YouTube channel.

SOURCE: PennDOT