Graduation Year

2012

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree

Ph.D.

Degree Granting Department

Civil and Environmental Engineering

Major Professor

Yu Zhang

Co-Major Professor

Jian Lu

Keywords

Access Density, Access Weight, Calibration, CORSIM, Speed Standard Deviation, TSIS

Abstract

Traffic speed is generally considered a core issue in roadway safety. Previous studies show that faster travel is not necessarily associated with an increased risk of being involved in a crash. When vehicles travel at the same speed in the same direction (even high speeds, as on interstates), they are not passing one another and cannot collide as long as they maintain the same speed. Conversely, the frequency of crashes increases when vehicles are traveling at different rates of speed. There is no doubt that the greater speed variation is, the greater the number of interactions among vehicles is, resulting in higher crash potential. This research tries to identify all major factors that are associated with speed variation on multilane highways, including roadway access density, which is considered to be the most obvious contributing factor. In addition, other factors are considered for this purpose, such as configuration of speed limits, characteristics of traffic volume, geometrics of roadways, driver behavior, environmental factors, etc. A microscopic traffic simulation method based on TSIS (Traffic Software Integrated System) is used to develop mathematical models to quantify the impacts of all possible

factors on speed variation.

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