Peter Savolainen

TITLE

Affiliate Researcher

EMAIL

pete@msu.edu

ADDITIONAL ROLES

MSU Foundation Professor, Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Michigan State University

AFFILIATIONS

InTrans, CTRE, REACTOR

About Peter

Dr. Savolainen is an internationally recognized expert in traffic safety. During his academic career, he has secured more than $11 million of externally funded research through agencies including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Federal Highway Administration, and various state departments of transportation. This research has led to the publication of more than 60 peer-reviewed articles in journals and conference proceedings. In addition, two of his recent projects have been recognized by the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO) Research Advisory Committee as High Value Research Projects.

Beyond his research activities, Dr. Savolainen is a member of the Transportation Research Board committees on Traffic Safety Data, Analysis, and Evaluation (ANB20), Statistical Methods (ABJ80), and Motorcycles and Mopeds (ANF30). He also serves on the editorial boards of Accident Analysis and Prevention and Analytic Methods in Accident Research. In addition, he is on the board of directors for ITS-Heartland. Dr. Savolainen teaches an introductory undergraduate course in transportation engineering, as well as graduate courses in geometric design, highway safety and risk management, urban transportation planning, transportation economics, and statistical and econometric methods of transportation data analysis.

Education


  • PhD, Civil Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, 2006 
  • MS, Civil Engineering, Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN, 2004 
  • BS, Civil Engineering, Michigan Technological University, Houghton, MI, 2002 

Profesional Service


  • Associate Professor, Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering, Iowa State University, 2014–present 
  • Assistant/Associate Professor, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, 2006–2014 

Selected Research


  • Evaluating Differential and Non-Differential Freeway Truck and Bus Speed Limits, Michigan DOT, 02/2013 to 05/2015 
  • Balancing the Costs of Mobility Investments in Work Zones, Michigan DOT, 05/2013 to 05/2015 
  • Michigan Urban Trunkline Intersections Safety Performance Function (SPFs), Michigan DOT, 10/2013 to 09/2015 
  • Michigan Urban Trunkline Segments Safety Performance Function (SPFs), Michigan DOT, 03/2014 to 09/2015 2013 Work Zone Safety Grant, FHWA, 09/2013 to 09/2016 Safety Impact of Differential Speed Limits on Rural 2-Lane Highways in Montana, Montana DOT, 04/2014 to 12/2015 
  • The Interrelationships between Speed Limits, Geometry, and Driver Behavior, Second Strategic Highway Research Program (SHRP2), Phase 1: 01/2015 to 09/2015, Phase 2: 03/2016 to 06/2018, Phase 3: 10/2017 to 09/2020
  • Development of a Comprehensive Access Management Policy and Guidelines, Iowa DOT, 01/2015 to 06/2017
  • Installation Guidance for Centerline and Edgeline Rumble Strips in Narrow Pavements, Iowa DOT/Iowa Highway Research Board/Midwest Transportation Center, 07/2015 to 12/2017
  • Crash Cushion Selection Criteria, Iowa DOT, 07/2015 to 06/2017 
  • In-Service Performance Evaluation of Median Cable Barrier in Iowa, Iowa DOT, 07/2015 to 06/2017 
  • Michigan Rural Safety Performance Function (SPFs) Development and Support, Michigan DOT, 10/2015 to 09/2017
  • Highway Safety Improvement Program Implementation Process, Iowa DOT, 04/2016 to 12/2017 
  • 2016 Work Zone Safety Grant, FHWA, 01/2017 to 01/2022
  • In-Service Evaluation of Culvert Extensions, Iowa DOT, 07/2017 to 12/2018
  • In-Service Evaluation of Railroad Signal and Stop Arm Pole Protection, Iowa DOT, 07/2017 to 12/2018
  • Investigation of Wrong-Way Driving, Iowa DOT, 07/2017 to 12/31/2017 

Selected Publications


  • Gates, T. J., Savolainen, P. T., Datta, T. K., Todd, R. G., and J. G. Morena. 2012. Use of Both Centerline and Shoulder Rumble Strips on High-Speed Two-Lane Rural Roadways: Impact on Lateral Lane Position and Passing Maneuvers of Vehicles. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2301, pp. 36–45.
  • Savolainen, P. T., Gates, T. J., Todd, R. G., Datta, T. K., and J. G. Morena. 2012. Lateral Placement of Motor Vehicles when Passing Bicyclists: Assessing Influence of Centerline Rumble Strips. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2314, pp. 14–21.
  • McArthur, A., J. J. Kay, P. T. Savolainen, and T. J. Gates. 2013. The Effects of Public Rest Areas on Fatigue-Related Crashes. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2386, pp. 16–25.
  • Kay, J., P. T. Savolainen, T. J. Gates, and T. K. Datta. 2014. Driver Behavior During Bicycle Passing Maneuvers in Response to a Share the Road Sign Treatment. Accident Analysis & Prevention, Vol. 70, pp. 92–99.
  • Davis, A., E. Hacker, P. T. Savolainen, and T. J. Gates. 2015. A Longitudinal Analysis of Rural Interstate Fatalities in Relation to Speed Limit Policies. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2514, pp. 21–31.
  • Russo, B. J., P. T. Savolainen, and T. J. Gates. 2016. Development of Crash Modification Factors for Installation of High-tension Cable Median Barrier. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 2588, pp. 116–125.
  • Hamzeie, R., B. Vafaei, J. Kay, P. T. Savolainen, and T. J. Gates. A Short-term Evaluation of the Transition from a Differential to Uniform Speed Limit for Trucks and Buses on Two-lane Highways. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, in press (2017).
  • Kay, J., T. J. Gates, and P. T. Savolainen. Raising Speed Limits on Rural Highways: A Process for Identification of Candidate Non-freeway Segments. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, in press (2017).
  • Rista, E., T. Barrette, R. Hamzeie, P. T. Savolainen, and T. J. Gates. Work Zone Safety Performance: A Comparison of Alternative Traffic Control Strategies. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, in press (2017).
  • Stapleton, S., T. Kirsch, T. J. Gates, and P. T. Savolainen. Predicting Yielding Compliance at Midblock Crossing Areas Based on Roadway, Traffic, and Crosswalk Characteristics. Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, in press (2017). 
  • Rista, E., A. Goswamy, B. Wang, T. Barrette, R. Hamzeie, B. Russo, G. Bou-Saab, and P. T. Savolainen. Examining the Safety Impacts of Narrow Lane Widths on Urban/Suburban Arterials: Estimation of a Panel Data Random Parameters Negative Binomial Model. Journal of Transportation Safety and Security, in press (2017). 

Professional Affiliations, Honors, and Service


  • Editorial Advisory Board: Accident Analysis & Prevention, 2013–present 
  • Editorial Advisory Board: Analytic Methods in Accident Research, 2013–present 
  • TRB Motorcycles and Mopeds Committee (ANF30), 2007–2010, 2012–present
  • TRB Safety Data, Analysis, and Evaluation Committee (ANB20), 2014–2017
  • TRB Statistical Methods Committee (ABJ80), 2014–present
  • Best Paper, TRB Committee on Operational Effects of Geometric Design, 2012
  • Top 5 High Value Research Project, AASHTO Research Advisory Committee, 2013
  • Best Paper, Transportation Research Board, Safety Data Competition, 2015
  • Safety High Value Research Project, AASHTO Research Advisory Committee, 2015 

Completed Research


In-Progress Research


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