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Surrogate safety evaluation of curve sections on an interurban highway under heterogeneous traffic conditions in India

Satbir Singh Puwar, Mohan Rao Amudapuram, Velmurugan Senathipathi


Road traffic safety is a global concern. Conventionally, road safety evaluation is carried out by analyzing historical crash data, which is a reactive approach to safety analysis. The safety analyst has to wait for sufficient time to accumulate crash data before taking up any safety analysis as a sample of substantial crashes is required for analysis. But in safety analysis with a proactive approach no crash data is required, which is replaced with surrogate “conflicts”, which can be obtained from the new techniques of traffic conflict technique and surrogate safety parameters. Other approaches can be applied in traffic safety evaluation in anticipation of the crash occurrence. The advent of traffic conflict techniques, i.e., use of traffic conflicts in place of crashes and microsimulation methods like modeling of the traffic flow and pattern in traffic streams on a road network, started to apply as a method of analyzing microscopic simulation models and traffic conflict techniques to determine the safety issues in traffic systems and correlate them to the probable incidences of collisions. In this regard, surrogate safety parameters have been used to determine the level of safety on the typical curve sections of an interurban highway namely, Faridabad-Gurgaon four-lane divided highway in Haryana, India. This is accomplished by the use of vehicle trajectory data extracted through microscopic simulation in Verkher in Staedten Simulation (VISSIM) and analysis in Surrogate Safety Assessment Model (SSAM) for the above-referred corridor. Further, efforts have been made to present the intensity of traffic conflicts happening at the curved sections. The surrogate safety measures time to collision (TTC), deceleration rate (DR), and change in velocity (ΔV), as well as conflicting vehicle speed (Max S), are obtained by analysis from the SSAM model for all the curve sections and are validated using the reported crash data on the curve sections of the candidate corridor for 3 years. With the help of statistical elaboration, the critical threshold for TTC with the heterogeneous traffic movement is found 1.6 s, meaning any conflict occurring less than this time would invariably lead to a fatal crash. Similarly, the critical deceleration rate is observed as 0.569 m/s2, implying that any conflict with more than this value may lead to a fatal crash. Further, the DeltaV values deduced for the study corridor on interurban curve sections catering to heterogeneous traffic movement is 4.1 m/s. Again, any conflict more than this value can turn into a potential crash.


surrogate safety; interurban curve sections; time to collision; microscopic simulation; the intensity of traffic conflicts

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18686/mt.v12i1.9199