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Transportation and Public Health e-Newsletter

June 2012

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Greetings public health leaders and advocates,

This month's e-newsletter brings you many ways to get involved in the discussion around health and transportation. We are pleased to announce our free webinar series on transportation and public health for 2012, and we invite you to register for APHA's 2012 Annual Meeting. We hope that you’ll share this e-newsletter with friends, family and colleagues. And please visit our transportation website to find other APHA reports, news and information.

Thank you,

The American Public Health Association



APHA Highlights



APHA 2012 Annual Meeting: Latest updates 2010 Expo Hall

Mark your calendar for the American Public Health Association 140th Annual Meeting and Exposition, Oct. 27-31, in San Francisco. Access the official Registration and Housing website for the 2012 Annual Meeting; complete your online registration, and your data will be directly linked to the online hotel/housing form for one-stop convenience. Discounted registration fees and hotel rates are now available at

Experience more than 1,000 scientific sessions focusing on the latest public health challenges, 700 booths of state-of-the-art public health products, networking opportunities, Public Health CareerMart and so much more! The meeting theme this year is Prevention and Wellness Across the Life Span. Several sessions connected to the built environment, transportation and public health are planned, and include Aging and the Built Environment; Poster Session: Transportation and Public Health; Injury Control and Emergency Health Services: Transportation; Supporting Active Living: Influencing Physical Activity through Local Policy and the Built Environment; and Changing the Playing Field: Built Environment and Policy Initiatives to Promote Physical Activity.

More than 10,000 abstracts covering a multitude of public health topics have been submitted for consideration at the 140th Annual Meeting. Anyone who submitted an abstract and who has not received a notification email can check the status of their abstract online using their assigned abstract number and password at All Annual Meeting presenters must be individual members and register for the meeting by the Sept. 20 registration deadline.

   Resources and News


New resources from APHA

AJPH_May2012coverFrom The American Journal of Public Health:

The Safe Routes to School Program in California: An Update. Claudia Chaufan, Jarmin Yeh, and Patrick Fox. American Journal of Public Health: June 2012, Vol. 102, No. 6, pp. e8-e11.

Safety Belt Laws and Disparities in Safety Belt Use Among US High-School Drivers. J. Felipe García-España, Flaura K. Winston, and Dennis R. Durbin. American Journal of Public Health: June 2012, Vol. 102, No. 6, pp. 1128-1134.


From Public Health Newswire (subscribe via email):

Cultural norms, safety laws key to reducing motor vehicle injuries

Teenage driver study reconfirms link between young passengers and chances of a fatal crash; Obesity could affect 42% of Americans by 2030; Multiple strategies needed to fight obesity, study suggests

Bike to Work Day; Kids switch gears to celebrate National Bike to School Day

Healthy roads, healthy schools: a look into the effects of transportation infrastructure

Weight of the Nation series highlights transportation’s potential to help fight obesity


Additional new resources 

New report on transportation’s impact on people with disabilities:

A new report, “Equity in Transportation for People with Disabilities,” from The American Association of People with Disabilities and The Leadership Conference Education Fund found several problems for people with disabilities living in both urban and rural areas when it comes to basic transportation. While the Americans with Disabilities Act requires public transportation systems to be accessible, many transportation systems remain inaccessible. As a result, roughly 31 percent of people with disabilities report having insufficient transportation compared to 13 percent of the general population. According to Lexer Quamie, counsel at The Leadership Conference Education Fund, “inadequate funding and enforcement of federal transportation mandates are major barriers to improved health outcomes and increased physical activity among people with disabilities. Countless people with disabilities can’t attend medical appointments or receive adequate health care, and they often experience health disparities because of the barriers they confront when trying to improve their health.” The report provides various recommendations around funding, programs, enforcement and more.


Additional new research:

Bicycle helmet use and non-use recently published research. Uibel S, Mueller D, Klingelhoefer D, Groneberg DA. Journal of Occupational Medicine and Toxicology: 2012, Vol. 7, No. 1, p. 9.

Congruent visual information improves traffic signage. Di Stasi LL, Megías A, Cándido A, Maldonado A, Catena A. Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour: 2012, Vol. 15, No. 4, pp. 438-444.

Determining subgroups of teens for targeted driving injury prevention strategies: a latent class analysis approach. Elliott MR, Jacobsohn L, Winston FK, Ginsburg KR. Traffic Injury Prevention: 2012, Vol. 13, No. 3, pp. 258-264.

Experiences from a Randomised, Controlled Trial on Cycling to School: Does Cycling Increase Cardiorespiratory Fitness?. Børrestad LA, Ostergaard L, Andersen LB, Bere E. Scandinavian Journal of Public Health: 2012, Vol. 40, No. 3, pp. 245-252.

Factors affecting highway safety, health care services, and motorization -- an exploratory empirical analysis using aggregate data. Anwaar A, Anastasopoulos P, Ong GP, Labi S, Islam MB. Journal of Transportation Safety and Security: 2011, Vol. 4, No. 2, pp. 94-115.

Factors associated with adolescents' propensity to drive with multiple passengers and to engage in risky driving behaviors. Mirman JH, Albert D, Jacobsohn LS, Winston FK. Journal of Adolescent Health: 2012, Vol. 50, No. 6, pp. 634-640.

Factors associated with bicycling to high school: insights from Davis, CA. Emond CR, Handy SL. Journal of Transport Geography: 2012, Vol. 20, No. 1, pp. 71-79.

How can the safety culture perspective be applied to road traffic?. Nævestad TO, Bjørnskau T. Transport Reviews: A Transnational Transdisciplinary Journal: 2011, Vol. 32, No. 2, pp. 139-154.

Metro railway safety: An analysis of accident precursors. Kyriakidis M, Hirsch R, Majumdar A. Safety Science: 2012, Vol. 50, No. 7, pp. 1535-1548.

Effect of North Carolina's restriction on teenage driver cell phone use two years after implementation. Goodwin AH, O'Brien NP, Foss RD. Accident Analysis and Prevention:  2012, Vol. 48 No. 1, pp. 363-367.

Exploring the safety implications of young drivers' behavior, attitudes and perceptions. Hassan HM, Abdel-Aty MA. Accident Analysis and Prevention: 2012, ePub.

Is the three-foot bicycle passing law working in Baltimore, Maryland?. Love DC, Breaud A, Burns S, Margulies J, Romano M, Lawrence R. Accident Analysis and Prevention: 2012, Vol. 48, No. 1, pp. 451-456.

Safety countermeasures and crash reduction in New York City-Experience and lessons learned. Chen L, Chen C, Ewing R, McKnight CE, Srinivasan R, Roe M. Accident Analysis and Prevention:  2012, ePub.

Safety effects of wider edge lines on rural, two-lane highways. Park ES, Carlson PJ, Porter RJ, Andersen CK. Accident Analysis and Prevention: 2012, Vol. 48, ePub, pp. 317-325.


Tennessee hosts obesity meeting where active transportation is emphasized:

On May 29 the Tennessee Obesity Task Force and Governor Haslam’s Health and Wellness Task Force for Tennessee co-hosted the first statewide event to involve the private sector in a conversation to address obesity in the state -- Obesity Physical Activity and Health Eating in Tennessee: The Bottom Line for the Corporate Sector. Mayor John Robert Smith, president and CEO of Reconnecting America, talked about obesity as a driver of economic impact on a national level and in his hometown of Meridian, Miss. Smith talked about his realization that the United States has the highest obesity rates in the world, and Mississippi has the highest obesity rates in the U.S., thus making the residents in his state the most obese in the world. He also fought to keep mass transit in Meridian and became a champion for Transit Oriented Development, given the health benefits of transit. David Schludt and Joan Randall, both from Vanderbilt University and the Tennessee Obesity Taskforce, talked about the slowing trend in the rise of obesity in the state, thanks in part to the Eat Well, Play More Tennessee plan adopted several years ago by the Tennessee Obesity Taskforce. A progress report on the achievements of the Task Force was provided at the meeting and included statewide policy victories such as increasing safety for bicyclists and pedestrians. Mayor Karl Dean of Nashville spoke about his emphasis on the health of residents in Nashville, highlighting the dozens of bikeways, greenways and sidewalks the city is building, as well as events to encourage use of those facilities.



  Get Involved


APHA webinars on Health and Equity in Transportation: Promising methods and modes to improve health outcomes Transportation stoplight photo 

APHA will host a free webinar series on critical health and equity issues within the transportation sector. These three, 60-minute APHA webinars will explore the ties between public health and increased use of public transportation; reduced injuries, particularly for children and young drivers; increased access to goods and services, such as healthy foods, jobs, employment and health care, for all communities; and other topics within transportation, such as updates on the federal surface transportation authorization. Webinar dates and times, as well as guest speaker details, are provided online. Participants must register to join the webinars. Registration is available online; it is limited and available on a first-come, first-served basis. For those who missed the first webinar on June 13, it is archived on the APHA website. Also, read a recent Q&A with Susan Polan of APHA on the 2012 webinar series.


Community Transformation Grants offer opportunity for small communities

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services announced available funding of $70 million to improve the health of small communities across the nation. Grants will be awarded to governmental agencies and non-governmental organizations across a variety of sectors, including transportation, housing, education and public health, in an effort to save lives and control the nation’s growing health care costs associated with preventable chronic diseases. The CTG Small Communities program targets intervention populations of up to 500,000 in neighborhoods, school districts, villages, towns, cities and counties to increase opportunities for people to make healthful choices and improve health. For more information on this grant opportunity and eligibility, visit The application deadline is July 31 by 5 p.m. EDT.


Call for Session Proposals: New Partners for Smart Growth Conference

The call for session proposals for the 12th Annual New Partners for Smart Growth Conference has officially opened! The conference will be held Feb 7-9, 2013, in Kansas City, Mo. Submit your ideas for breakout sessions, workshops, trainings, tours and networking activities. To access the form and submission instructions, visit Proposals will be accepted through June 30.


Walk to School Day: time to register Child walking

Registration is now open for the 16th annual Walk to School Day, which celebrates the many benefits of walking and bicycling to school. Walk to School Day 2012 will take place Oct. 3. Participation in this event reached a record high in 2011 with more than 4,000 registered events in the nation, and that number is expected to increase this year. Walk to School Day event registration is free and available to individuals and organizations holding an October event. Events that register on the Walk to School website,, will be displayed on an interactive U.S. map on the website, where neighboring communities, media and other organizations can identify who is walking in their area.


Call for papers at TRB 2013

The TRB Health and Transportation Joint Subcommittee, under the auspices of its sponsoring committees, seeks research papers on aspects of the connections between health and transportation. The aim of this call for papers is to expand and improve the current understanding and evaluation of transportation policies, procedures and actions that impact health. Specifically, papers are being sought that describe the programs, policies, incentives or disincentives, emerging methods and/or interventions that show the most promising potential to improve health outcomes through transportation decision-making, including planning and/or operations. The Joint Subcommittee is also interested in learning how the health effects are distributed across population groups (e.g., based on factors including income, race and ethnicity, sex, age). Papers for publication and/or presentation must be submitted before Aug. 1. Each paper will be peer-reviewed according to TRB procedures. TRB paper specifications are found online.


  Upcoming Events in 2012




24-27 - 4th Urban Street Symposium: Chicago

26-28 – American Public Health Association (APHA) Midyear Meeting: Charlotte, N.C.

26-29 - Velo-City Global: Vancouver, BC, Canada


11-13 - National Association of County and City Health Officials: Los Angeles

14-17 - International Urban Parks Conference: New York

28-8/1 - Association for Commuter Transportation: Savannah, Ga. 


6-9 - National Conference of State Legislatures - Legislative Summit: Chicago

12-15 Institute of Transportation Engineers Annual Meeting: Atlanta


10-13 - ProWalk/ProBike: Long Beach, Calif.

12-14 - Transportation Planning for Small and Medium-Sized Communities: Big Sky, Mont.

30-10/3 - American Public Transportation Association Annual Meeting: Seattle


3 - Walk to School Day: International

14-17 - Rail~Volution: Los Angeles

27-30 - American Public Health Association (APHA) Annual Meeting: San Francisco


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