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Title: Does the effect of traffic calming measures endure over time? A simulator study on the influence of gates
Authors: ARIEN, Caroline 
BRIJS, Kris 
VANROELEN, Giovanni 
JONGEN, Ellen 
WETS, Geert 
Issue Date: 2014
Abstract: Accident statistics show that transitions from rural to urban areas are accident prone locations. Inappropriate speed and mental underload have been identified as important causal factors nearby such transitions. A variety of traffic calming measures (TCM) near rural–urban transitions has been tested in field experiments and driving simulator studies. Simulator experiments repeatedly exposing participants to the same treatment are scarce, hence it is unclear to what extent the effects of a TCM endure over time. This is precisely the objective of the current study: to examine what happens with the behavior of drivers when they are exposed multiple times to the same treatment (in this case a gate construction located at a rural–urban transition). Over a period of five successive days, seventeen participants completed a 17 km test-drive on a driving simulator with two thoroughfare configurations (gates present or absent) in a within-subject design. Results indicate that gates induced a local speed reduction that sustained over this five-day period. Even though participants were inclined to accelerate again once passed by this gate configuration, they always kept driving at an appropriate speed. We did not find any negative side effects on SD of acceleration/deceleration or SDLP. Overall we conclude that gate constructions have the potential to improve traffic safety in the direct vicinity of rural–urban transitions, even if drivers are repeatedly exposed. Notwithstanding, we advise policy makers to appropriately use this measure. Best is to always carefully consider the broader situational context (such as whether the road serves a traffic- rather than a residential function) of each particular location where the implementation of a gate construction is one of the options.
Keywords: traffic calming measures; gates; rural-urban transitions; driving simulator; repeated exposure
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ISSN: 1369-8478
e-ISSN: 1873-5517
DOI: 10.1016/j.trf.2013.10.010
ISI #: 000331021000006
Rights: Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
Category: A1
Type: Journal Contribution
Validations: ecoom 2015
Appears in Collections:Research publications

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