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FHWA Highway Safety Programs

Pg. 1 - 8: Pedestrian Lighting Primer

The first section is the introduction covering the scope of the primer, pedestrian safety and security, benefits of lighting, existing guidance and gaps.

Last Updated (Year): 2022

Year Produced: 2022


Lighting of pedestrian facilities plays a key role in increasing the safety performance of the road network for all users. Effective pedestrian lighting installations are a means of addressing the vulnerability of pedestrians during dark conditions and improving safety and security of all road users spanning different ages and abilities, including wheelchair and other mobility device users. Lighting not only makes it easier for drivers to see pedestrians, but also improves pedestrians’ abilities to see their surroundings and detect trip hazards. It increases pedestrians’ perceived levels of safety and security associated with the use of pedestrian facilities. Lighting may also increase pedestrians’ confidence in performing certain tasks, such as assessing and selecting appropriate gaps at uncontrolled crossings and monitoring vehicles approaching and making different movements through signalized intersections. The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) published this primer to be a resource for transportation practitioners interested in the safety and security benefits of pedestrian lighting as well as lighting design considerations at locations with existing or future pedestrian activity. 


The E's:Education, Engineering, Enforcement

Ped Bike Activity:

  • Planning
  • Design
  • Strategies and Selection Processes

Ped Bike Topic:

  • Benefits
  • Guidance
  • Safety
  • Pedestrians

Urban Context:Rural, Urban

Resource Type:

  • Information

Link to Content Source:

Pedestrian Lighting Primer