Level-of-Service (LOS), operational condition, safety status, crash severity, crash types, signalized intersections, arterial corridors.
Since its inception in 1965, the Level-of-Service (LOS) has proved to be an important and practical "quality of service" indicator for transportation facilities around the world, widely used in the transportation and planning fields. The LOS rates these facilities' traffic operating conditions through the following delay-based indicators (ordered from best to worst conditions): A, B, C, D, E and F. This LOS rating has its foundation on quantifiable measures of effectiveness (MOEs) and on road users' perceptions; altogether, these measures define a LOS based on acceptable traffic operating conditions for the road user, implying that traffic safety is inherent to this definition. However, since 1994 safety has been excluded from the LOS definition since it cannot be quantified nor explicitly defined. The latter has been the motivation for research based on the LOS-Safety relationship, conducted at the University of Central Florida (UCF). Using data from two of the most studied transportation facility types within the field of traffic safety, signalized intersections and multilane high-speed arterial corridors, the research conducted has the following main objectives: to incorporate the LOS as a parameter in several traffic safety models, to extend the methodology adopted in previous studies to the subject matter, and to provide a platform for future transportation-related research on the LOS-Safety relationship. A meticulous data collection and preparation process was performed for the two LOS-Safety studies comprising this research. Apart from signalized intersections' and multilane-high speed arterial corridors' data, the other required types of information corresponded to crashes and road features, both obtained from FDOT's respective databases. In addition, the Highway Capacity Software (HCS) and the ArcGIS software package were extensively used for the data preparation. The result was a representative and robust dataset for each LOS-Safety study, to be later tested and analyzed with appropriate statistical methods. Regarding the LOS-Safety study for signalized intersections, two statistical techniques were used. The Generalized Estimating Equations (GEEs), the first technique, was used for the analyses considering all periods of a regular weekday (i.e. Monday through Friday): Early Morning, A.M. Peak, Midday, P.M. Peak and Late Evening; the second technique considered was the Negative Binomial, which was used for performing an individual analysis per period of the day. On the other hand, the LOS-Safety study for multilane high-speed arterial corridors made exclusive use of the Negative Binomial technique. An appropriate variable selection process was required for the respective model building and calibration procedures; the resulting models were built upon the six following response variables: total crashes, severe crashes, as well as rear-end, sideswipe, head-on and angle plus left-turn crashes. The final results proved to be meaningful for the understanding of traffic congestion effects on road safety, and on how they could be useful within the transportation planning scope. Overall, it was found that the risk for crash occurrence at signalized intersections and multilane high-speed arterial corridors is quite high between stable and unacceptable operating conditions; it was also found that this risk increases as it becomes later in the day. Among the significant factors within the signalized intersection-related models were LOS for the intersection as a whole, cycle length, lighting conditions, land use, traffic volume (major and minor roads), left-turn traffic volume (major road only), posted speed limit (major and minor roads), total number of through lanes (major and minor roads), overall total and total number of left-turn lanes (major road only), as well as county and period of the day (dummy variables). For multilane-high speed arterial corridors, the final models included LOS for the road section, average daily traffic (ADT), total number of through lanes in a single direction, total length of the road section, pavement surface type, as well as median and inside shoulder widths. A summary of the overall results per study, model implications and each LOS indicator is presented. Some of the final recommendations are to develop models for other crash types, to perform a LOS-Safety analysis at the approach-level for signalized intersections, as well as one that incorporates intersections within the arterial corridors' framework.
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Master of Science (M.S.)
College of Engineering and Computer Science
Civil and Environmental Engineering
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Almonte-Valdivia, Ana, "Level-of-service And Traffic Safety Relationship: An Exploratory Analysis Of Signalized Intersections And Multiland High-speed Arterial Corridors" (2009). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2004-2019. 4050.