Poll: drivers in Portland show racial bias towards pedestrians
Racial bias goes beyond education, employment, health care and criminal sentencing according to a new study of traffic psychology.
The study was conducted in downtown Portland by Portland State University and University of Arizona.
[It] found that twice as many drivers failed to yield for black pedestrians than those who were white. Meanwhile, black pedestrians typically had to wait a third longer for cars to stop for them when they had the legal right of way.
With fewer motorists yielding for them, minorities are more likely to take greater risks to cross the street, which might factor into why they’re disproportionately represented in U.S. pedestrian fatalities, the study concluded.
“In a fast-paced activity like driving, where decisions may need to be made in a fraction of a second, people’s’ actions can be influenced by these subtle attitudes,” the study said.
The results come at the same time as Smart Growth America’s annual “Dangerous by Design 2014” which shows the most dangerous U.S. Cities for pedestrians.
Portland was ranked 7th in terms of safety for walking according to the group’s “pedestrian danger index.”
Nationally, Blacks have a 60 percent higher rate of pedestrian deaths than whites. It’s 43 percent higher for Hispanics.
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