For the past several decades, pedestrian safety has been an oncoming issue that has thrown the area of transportation engineering into a frenzy. Pedestrian safety has become predominantly one of the leading causes of fatalities in traffic accidents. Florida has been reported as one of the leading states in pedestrian fatalities with 2.56 fatality rate per 100,000 population and about 20 percent of all traffic fatalities in the state of Florida. Nonetheless, as research is being done and hypotheses are being calibrated and produced, there has to be a way of measuring and determining the number of pedestrian-to-vehicle conflicts without having to yet apply the system on the field without further validation. Moreover, pedestrian-to-vehicle conflicts have been a rising issue in correlation to the pedestrian fatalities. The fact that the highway safety manual has limited information about crash modification functions for pedestrian and that pedestrian fatality is a rare event, it is worthwhile identifying and adopting surrogate safety measures for pedestrian. Thus, having the capability to analyze various surrogate safety measures within the confines of micro simulation would be a great contribution to real-world application. As a result, the purpose of this thesis is to determine the feasibility of using micro simulation to assess safety of pedestrian crossings using specifically VISSIM and SSAM. During this study, a great deal of data extraction was taken from videotapes collected at nine various intersections, each with its own environmental and geometrical factors. Various parameters were taken from the different sites in order to calibrate and validate VISSIM and SSAM. The parameters included traffic and pedestrian volumes, walking speeds, crossing times, signal timings, and pedestrian-to-vehicle conflicts. During this study, an extensive amount of analysis testing was done in order to obtain the optimum threshold within various combinations of thresholds that would define the pedestrian-to-vehicle conflicts. The analysis was initiated for the time to collision (TTC) and post encroachment time (P.E.T) thresholds. This is done so that the typical scenario of an intersection can be analyzed and comparisons can be made efficiently between observed and simulated conflicts. There were 55 combinations of TTC and PET thresholds produced that were also statistically calculated using the mean absolute percent error (MAPE) in order to determine the most efficient threshold for all 9 intersections. Calibration also was done for parameters in VISSIM that included the safety distance factor (SDF) and the Add-stop distance to assess the sensitivity of these parameters in computing the number of pedestrian-to-vehicle conflicts. These thresholds and factors were used for further validation and assessment of the feasibility of the SSAM and VISSIM model. Data results displayed that the simulated conflicts and the observed conflicts illustrated reasonable correlation. However, even with the feasibility of VISSIM and SSAM being validated, there still are questions that arise pertaining to whether VISSIM and other micro simulation can assess real-world driver behavior and the unpredictability of driver maneuvering. More research with more intersections are recommended to be done.


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Graduation Date





Radwan, Essam A.


Master of Science (M.S.)


College of Engineering and Computer Science


Civil, Environmental, and Construction Engineering

Degree Program

Civil Engineering; Transportation System Engineering









Release Date

November 2019

Length of Campus-only Access

3 years

Access Status

Masters Thesis (Open Access)