Evaluation of dynamic speed display signs Conference Paper uri icon


  • This paper describes an analysis of the effectiveness of dynamic speed display signs (DSDSs) installed in several permanent locations. Sites evaluated included a school speed zone, two transition speed zones in advance of a school speed zone, two sharp horizontal curves, and two approaches to signalized intersections on high-speed roadways. Data were collected before the DSDSs were installed, about one week after installation to determine initial effects of the signs upon vehicle speeds, and again about four months after installation to determine how well the initial speed reductions were maintained. Researchers analyzed average speeds, 85th percentile speeds, and the percentage of the sample exceeding the speed limit In addition, least-squares regression analyses between the speed of a vehicle upstream of the DSDS and that vehicle's speed measured again at the DSDS were performed to determine whether the sign affected higher-speed vehicles more substantially than lower-speed vehicles. Overall, average speeds were reduced by 9 mph at the school speed zone. Elsewhere, the effect of the DSDS was less dramatic, with average speeds reduced by 5 mph or less depending on the location tested. As expected, those motorists traveling faster than the posted speed limit did appear to reduce their speed more significantly in response to the DSDS than did motorists traveling at or below the posted speed limit. The results of this project suggest that DSDSs can be effective at reducing speeds in permanent applications if appropriate site conditions apply.

published proceedings


altmetric score

  • 8.12

author list (cited authors)

  • Ullman, G. L., & Rose, E. R.

citation count

  • 10

complete list of authors

  • Ullman, GL||Rose, ER

publication date

  • January 2005