Assessing safety critical braking events in naturalistic driving studies

Publisher's full text
Omar Bagdadi

Naturalistic driving studies permit the study of driving behaviour during every day driving. Such studies have a long duration and rare events such as near-crashes and even crashes do occur during the period of the study. This fact gives an opportunity to study events that are otherwise difficult to find. However, the vast amount of data recorded within these naturalistic driving studies demands a huge amount of manual work to identify hazardous situations. This paper concerns the development and validation of a new method, based on critical jerk, to identify safety critical braking events during car driving. The method was compared with one of today's most used method, which is based on the longitudinal acceleration measure. Both methods were applied on near-crash data from the 100-car naturalistic driving study previously carried out by the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI). The data included 637 near-crashes. The results from the analyses showed that the critical jerk method performed approximately 1.6 times higher overall success rate than the method based on the longitudinal acceleration measure. In addition, a positive correlation was found between driver's safety critical braking event and crash involvement. The conclusion is that the critical jerk method is capable of detecting safety critical braking events and may also be used for assessing high risk drivers.

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