Estimating the safety performance of urban road transportation networks. Academic Article uri icon


  • Transportation planning models are typically used to estimate future traffic patterns, peak period traffic, travel time, and various environmental or other related traffic flow characteristics. Unfortunately, traffic safety is seldom, if ever, explicitly considered proactively during the transportation planning process. This omission is attributed to various factors, including the lack of available tools needed to estimate the number of crashes during this process. To help fill this void, the research on which this paper is based aimed, as a primary objective, to develop a tool that would allow the estimation of crashes on digital or coded urban transportation networks during the planning process. The secondary objective of the research was to describe how the predictive models should be applied on these networks and explain the important issues and limitations surrounding their application. To accomplish these objectives, safety performance functions specifically created for this work were applied to two sample digital networks created with the help of EMME/2, a software package widely used in transportation planning. The results showed that it is possible to predict crashes on digital transportation networks, but confirmed the reality that the accuracy of the predictions is directly related to the precision of the traffic flow estimates. The crash predictions are also sensitive to how the digital network is coded, and it is shown how appropriate adjustments can be made.

published proceedings

  • Accid Anal Prev

author list (cited authors)

  • Lord, D., & Persaud, B. N.

citation count

  • 53

complete list of authors

  • Lord, Dominique||Persaud, Bhagwant N

publication date

  • July 2004