The Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) has announced 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.
- Property damage-only crashes increased by 20 percent.
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.