Research Papers

Methods for the safety evaluation of roadway curves

Filename Gorski.pdf
Filesize 11 KB
Version 1
Date added June 6, 2010
Downloaded 2 times/fois
Category 2010 CMRSC XX Niagara
Tags Session 3C
Author/Auteur Zygmunt M. Gorski


Purpose: The reduced cost of consumer, video cameras and video-editing software provides the capability of using such tools to obtain detailed studies of many motor vehicle accident issues. This paper will focus on how such technology can be used to improve the study of roadway curves as factors in the causation of loss of control collisions.
Method: Multiple video cameras are set-up at strategic points at a roadway curve. Reflective markers are placed on the roadway surface in a grid pattern, spaced 10 metres apart longitudinally and at 0.5 metre increments laterally from the roadway centre-line. The multiple views from the synchronized video cameras are copied into a video-editting program (Adobe Premiere) and displayed on-screen in multiple windows. Details of vehicle motions are compared to the factors present at the time of incidence. A specific example is used of a site on Clarke Road in London, Ontario containing an S- curve. Observations are obtained of vehicles travelling over the roadway centre-line or travelling off the right asphalt edge.
Results: A detailed chronology is provided of the site defects and evidence of previous loss-of- control collisions. Lack of maintenance is demonstrated through a progressive development of a significant roadway edge drop-off through the spring and into the fall of 2009. Ten video cameras are used on six days of videotaping resulting in approximately 10 hours of videotaped data. Sixteen observations of vehicles travelling over a 7-inch edge drop-off are documented. One of these observations is studied in detail.
Conclusions: 1. The lower cost of video cameras and editing software means that data of good quality and detail can be obtained at a fraction of the cost compared to the past.
2. Lack of timely roadway maintenance remains a problem that is not readily visible to the general public or to police who do not have the specialized training to detect roadway problems.
3. Recent developments such as a reduced role in police investigation of minor collisions and financial stresses upon local governments who fund roadway maintenance, mean that many single-vehicle, loss-of-control collisions are unreported at the sites of rural curves resulting in erred traffic data and reduced funds applied to correct roadway deficiencies that could be causing those collisions.
4. Roadway inspectors, fully independent of the municipalities that could become liable for the discovery of roadway deficiencies, should be employed in Ontario so that roadway deficiencies are not hidden, but placed in their accurate priority amongst collision causal factors.

[Oral presentation only]

Zygmunt M. Gorski