Identifying critical road geometry parameters affecting crash rate and crash type

Sarbaz Othman
Robert Thomson
Gunnar Lannér

The objective of this traffic safety investigation was to find critical road parameters affecting crash rate (CR). The study was based on crash and road maintenance data from Western Sweden. More than 3000 crashes, reported from 2000 to 2005 on median-separated roads, were collected and combined with road geometric and surface data. The statistical analysis showed variations in CR when road elements changed confirming that road characteristics affect CR. The findings indicated that large radii right-turn curves were more dangerous than left curves, in particular, during lane changing manoeuvres. However sharper curves are more dangerous in both left and right curves. Moreover, motorway carriageways with no or limited shoulders have the highest CR when compared to other carriageway widths, while one lane carriageway sections on 2+1 roads were the safest. Road surface results showed that both wheel rut depth and road roughness have negative impacts on traffic safety.

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