The role of road design

Project manager
Debora Lombardi
Period
2020-04-15 - 2020-09-30

The role of road design to support psychological processing and safe behavior of vulnerable road users at complex intersections: A feasibility study in traffic simulators.

Despite being under-represented in the official reports, the number of ill interactions between vulnerable road users (VRUs) is growing with consequences for both road safety and the engagement in sustainable travel modes. A great extent of safety-critical situations involving VRUs are due to their engagement in aberrant behaviors, e.g., misjudgment and errors. These situations possibly occur due to the low number of formal rules regulating VRUs’ road behavior and the less attention payed by urban planners to design dedicated off-road facilities for vulnerable users. Segregated spaces to keep VRUs away from the car lane have been implemented to improve the safety of bicyclists. However, it has often resulted in poor-designed common spaces, where road users with different behavioral patterns and needs are kept together, creating a new set of safety concerns. The recent increase in popularity of e-scooter-mobility services is making this problem even more evident and highlights the urgency to find new solutions for safe traffic environments. This project aims to identify effective design countermeasures to support the vulnerable road users’ perceptual and cognitive tasks and also to give them support to make better behavioral choices in critical complex traffic situations, i.e., segregated shared space on intersections.

This project would constitute the stepping-stone for next studies in the area of road safety behavior; thus, we expect to provide promising results enabling to introduce a new methodology to investigate the VRUs-environment interaction via a genuine multi-disciplinary work. The project team also expect to demonstrate the advantages of conducting simulator studies using a systematic manipulation of the environmental conditions and collecting multi-methodological human responses to safety countermeasures. The findings would hopefully also generate a larger successful project application.

The role of road design to support psychological processing and safe behavior of vulnerable road users at complex intersections: A feasibility study in traffic simulatorsThe role of road design to support psychological processing and safe behavior of vulnerable road users at complex intersections: A feasibility study in traffic simulatorsThe role of road design to support psychological processing and safe behavior of vulnerable road users at complex intersections: A feasibility study in traffic simulators

Short facts

Project title: The role of road design
Project type:
Research area:
Road user behaviour
Period:
-

Safer – Vehicle and Traffic Safety Centre

SAFER is the open research arena where researchers and expertise work together to create safe mobility. Our traffic safety approach covers people, vehicles and the infrastructure – and together we contribute to safer road transports and smarter, more sustainable cities.

Contact information

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 safer [at] chalmers.se