The University of Southampton
University of Southampton Institutional Repository

Crossing the road in time: Inequalities in older people's walking speeds

Crossing the road in time: Inequalities in older people's walking speeds
Crossing the road in time: Inequalities in older people's walking speeds
Pedestrian crossings in the UK and US require people to walk at 1.2 m/s to cross the road in time; however a large proportion of older people do not walk this fast, potentially discouraging walking or putting older people at risk of injury. We use longitudinal data to investigate changes in walking speed, and ability to cross the road in time, at older ages.

31,015 walking speed measurements were taken from 10,249 men and women aged 60+ years in waves 1–7 of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (2002–2014). Growth curve analyses were used to model how walking speed changes with increasing age, and predicted probabilities of being able to cross the road in time were estimated.
10% of measured walking speeds were fast enough to cross the road in time. Walking speed declined with age (−5.7×10−3m/s/yr (95% CI −7.6×10−3, −3.9×10−3)), and the decline accelerated with increasing age (−0.3 ×10−3m/s/yr (−0.4 ×10−3, −0.3 ×10−3)). Female, less wealthy and less healthy older people had slower walking speeds. For instance, predicted probability of crossing the road in time at age 60 was 14.8% (10.1, 18.5) and 2.7% (1.5, 3.8) for the richest and poorest men and 8.4% (6.0, 1.1) and 1.5% (0.9, 2.2) for the richest and poorest women, and at age 80 they were 7.1% (3.6, 10.5) and 1.0% (0.3, 1.7) for the richest and poorest men and 3.7% (1.6, 5.9) and 0.5% (0.1, 0.9) for the richest and poorest women.
Most older people do not walk fast enough to cross the road in time. Even the majority of the wealthiest and healthiest people aged 60 years and older do not walk fast enough to cross pedestrian crossings in the allocated time. Crossing times should be increased to allow for older peoples’ slower walking speeds or other policies considered to improve walkability, and to help avoid injuries and social isolation.
2214-1405
77-83
Webb, Elizabeth
1a99a7be-5e07-4e0a-9b69-7f5dca27d1f0
Bell, Steven
b3c6d282-d989-4455-8983-61cb506e073e
Lacey, Rebecca
c8a9b006-3604-456f-af1d-50e6f95bf615
Abell, Jessica
e9556ff1-2099-44de-9643-c018d3d70b75
Webb, Elizabeth
1a99a7be-5e07-4e0a-9b69-7f5dca27d1f0
Bell, Steven
b3c6d282-d989-4455-8983-61cb506e073e
Lacey, Rebecca
c8a9b006-3604-456f-af1d-50e6f95bf615
Abell, Jessica
e9556ff1-2099-44de-9643-c018d3d70b75

Webb, Elizabeth, Bell, Steven, Lacey, Rebecca and Abell, Jessica (2017) Crossing the road in time: Inequalities in older people's walking speeds. Journal of Transport and Health, 5, 77-83. (doi:10.1016/j.jth.2017.02.009).

Record type: Article

Abstract

Pedestrian crossings in the UK and US require people to walk at 1.2 m/s to cross the road in time; however a large proportion of older people do not walk this fast, potentially discouraging walking or putting older people at risk of injury. We use longitudinal data to investigate changes in walking speed, and ability to cross the road in time, at older ages.

31,015 walking speed measurements were taken from 10,249 men and women aged 60+ years in waves 1–7 of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (2002–2014). Growth curve analyses were used to model how walking speed changes with increasing age, and predicted probabilities of being able to cross the road in time were estimated.
10% of measured walking speeds were fast enough to cross the road in time. Walking speed declined with age (−5.7×10−3m/s/yr (95% CI −7.6×10−3, −3.9×10−3)), and the decline accelerated with increasing age (−0.3 ×10−3m/s/yr (−0.4 ×10−3, −0.3 ×10−3)). Female, less wealthy and less healthy older people had slower walking speeds. For instance, predicted probability of crossing the road in time at age 60 was 14.8% (10.1, 18.5) and 2.7% (1.5, 3.8) for the richest and poorest men and 8.4% (6.0, 1.1) and 1.5% (0.9, 2.2) for the richest and poorest women, and at age 80 they were 7.1% (3.6, 10.5) and 1.0% (0.3, 1.7) for the richest and poorest men and 3.7% (1.6, 5.9) and 0.5% (0.1, 0.9) for the richest and poorest women.
Most older people do not walk fast enough to cross the road in time. Even the majority of the wealthiest and healthiest people aged 60 years and older do not walk fast enough to cross pedestrian crossings in the allocated time. Crossing times should be increased to allow for older peoples’ slower walking speeds or other policies considered to improve walkability, and to help avoid injuries and social isolation.

Text
1-s2.0-S2214140517300464-main - Version of Record
Available under License Creative Commons Attribution.
Download (419kB)

More information

Accepted/In Press date: 28 February 2017
e-pub ahead of print date: 8 March 2017
Published date: June 2017

Identifiers

Local EPrints ID: 414166
URI: http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/id/eprint/414166
ISSN: 2214-1405
PURE UUID: 866f51a9-8bc2-4c60-8578-fc29012d4fa8

Catalogue record

Date deposited: 15 Sep 2017 16:30
Last modified: 08 Jan 2022 10:20

Export record

Altmetrics

Contributors

Author: Elizabeth Webb
Author: Steven Bell
Author: Rebecca Lacey
Author: Jessica Abell

Download statistics

Downloads from ePrints over the past year. Other digital versions may also be available to download e.g. from the publisher's website.

View more statistics

Atom RSS 1.0 RSS 2.0

Contact ePrints Soton: eprints@soton.ac.uk

ePrints Soton supports OAI 2.0 with a base URL of http://eprints.soton.ac.uk/cgi/oai2

This repository has been built using EPrints software, developed at the University of Southampton, but available to everyone to use.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive cookies on the University of Southampton website.

×