Transit vehicle collision characteristics for connected vehicle applications research : analysis of collisions involving transit vehicles and applicability of connected vehicle solutions.
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Transit vehicle collision characteristics for connected vehicle applications research : analysis of collisions involving transit vehicles and applicability of connected vehicle solutions.

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    The transit industry has always shown a great interest in the adoption of transformational safety technologies to improve the safety of its passengers and drivers, as well as all road users including pedestrians. Due to its unique characteristics and behaviors, such as vehicle size and frequent stops/starts, transit often deals with safety challenges and priorities that are often different from those for light duty and commercial vehicles. The purpose of this report was to identify candidate transit crash scenarios for near-term connected vehicle safety research using data from the 2010 National Transit Database (NTD). The study identifies motor bus collision types according to collision characteristics, including the type of object the transit vehicle collided with (e.g., pedestrian, motor vehicles, infrastructure elements, etc.), the location of the collision (e.g., mid-block or at an intersection), and the geographic relationship between vehicles when they collided. The study revealed some prominent characteristics (such as geographic relationship between vehicles) related to motor bus crashes, and how these characteristics are amenable to connected vehicle solutions. The study then ranks collision types by frequency, cost, and average cost per crash. Based on the findings, recommendations for potential application areas for connected vehicle transit safety are introduced. These areas include:

    • Transit-Vehicle/Pedestrian Warning Applications: These applications may consider vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) or vehicle-to-pedestrian (V2P) communications to provide warnings to transit vehicles of a pedestrian’s presence in the roadway – either in a crosswalk or outside of the crosswalk.

    • Bus Stop Warning Applications: Using vehicle awareness messages, applications could be developed to alert nearby vehicles or pedestrians of the presence of a transit vehicle at or near a bus stop.

    • Left Turn Assist Warning Applications: These applications could provide information to drivers performing unprotected left turns to judge the gaps in oncoming traffic and to inform them of hazards to completing a safe left turn. These applications may be supported using vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications where vehicles share information about their location, speed, trajectories, and other vehicles at the intersection.

    • Forward Collision Warning Applications: These applications could alert and then warn drivers if they fail to brake when a vehicle in their path is stopped or traveling slower.

    • Blind Spot Warning/Lane Change Warning Applications: These applications could warn drivers when they try to change lanes if there is a car in the blind spot of an overtaking vehicle.

    • Angle Collisions at Intersections Warning Applications: These applications could provide warnings to drivers at signalized intersections, at intersections equipped with stop signs, highway rail intersections (HRI), or light rail intersections.

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