Evaluation of Messaging Techniques to Increase Vehicle Spacing at Work Zones

Project Details
STATUS

In-Progress

PROJECT NUMBER

21-756, TPF-5(438)

START DATE

03/01/21

END DATE

05/31/22

FOCUS AREAS

Safety

RESEARCH CENTERS InTrans, CTRE, REACTOR, SWZDI
SPONSORS

Iowa Department of Transportation

Researchers
Principal Investigator
Jing Dong

Transportation Engineer, CTRE

Co-Principal Investigator
John Shaw

Researcher, CTRE

Co-Principal Investigator
Skylar Knickerbocker

Research Engineer, REACTOR

About the research

Following too closely (tailgating) is a persistent problem throughout the roadway system, and its consequences can be particularly severe in work zones. In fact, rear-end collisions are the most common type of crash in work zones. Maintaining sufficient car-following gaps allows drivers enough time to react to unexpected and complex situations at work zones, and thus can reduce the rear-end collision potential. Work zones provide an opportunity to deliver messaging aimed at encouraging safer driving behavior at moments when that information is highly relevant.

This project will evaluate the effectiveness of roadside messaging techniques on increasing vehicle spacing (headway) in work zones.Through a review of the state-of-the-art and the state-of-the-practice, measures and techniques for encouraging drivers to maintain proper spacing will be summarized. Messaging techniques that encourage safe following distances in work zones will be developed and the effectiveness of these messages will be evaluated using vehicle speed and car-following (headway) data collected from sensors deployed at work zones.

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