About the research
The ultimate objective of this research is to determine how drivers negotiate work zones and determine the factors present when safety critical situations arise as compared to normal work zone driving. Ideally, the impact of countermeasures can be determined. However, the number and types of work zones present in the data may be limited, as a result identifying the types of driver behaviors that contribute to work zone crashes will be the greatest contribution.
This information can be used to better select and target countermeasures. For instance, different countermeasures would be targeted to alert drivers when speeding is the main problem compared to when driver distraction is the main problem. Using the information from Phases I and II, the research will result in the following products, which can help stakeholders including safety researchers, the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials (AASHTO), the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA), state departments of transportation (DOTs), counties, and cities.
The project will provide: (1) final reports and tech briefs outlining the safety impacts of driver, work zone, and roadway characteristics; (2) recommendations for application of countermeasures to address identified driver behaviors; and (3) evaluation of current work zones and recommendations for changes to work zone layouts and standards. The most significant contribution of this research is a better understanding of the roles that speed and distraction play in work zone safety critical events.