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Safe passing as a measure to improve road safety on rural roads in Germany

  • Rural roads (highways) in Germany have to provide both high road safety and an appropriate level of service in accordance with their function in the road network. Single carriageway rural roads often underperform these expectations. An analysis of severe accidents on rural roads found two main contributing factors. First, high or inappropriate speed leads to accidents caused by the loss of control of the vehicle. Second, unsafe passing manoeuvres related to a misjudgement of sight distance, speed of oncoming vehicles or a misjudgement of the driver vehicle's acceleration capability. On the five roads where unsafe passing manoeuvres were a main contributing factor to accident occurrence, single short passing lanes (600 m to 1.2 km) were built to provide safe passing. On the remaining two-lane sections passing was prohibited by road signs and road marking. This paper investigates the effect of this design change on the accident situation and on traffic flow. The research project is based on a before/after comparison of traffic and accident data. Traffic volume, vehicle types and their velocities as well as the time gaps between the vehicles were recorded at different cross-sections. The result shows a significant improvement in road safety. This improvement was especially noted for severe head-on crashes, which were reduced to almost zero. The analysis of traffic flow on these roads pointed out that the chosen lengths of passing lanes were sufficient for safe passing and thereby reduced the need for dangerous driving behaviour. The recommendations of this research were fundamental for the determination of the design parameters of the second highest design class (EKL 2) in the new German Rural Road Design Guideline (RAL) published in spring 2013.

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Author:Thomas Jährig
Document Type:Conference Proceeding
Date of Publication (online):2015/10/12
Year of first publication:2014
Release Date:2015/10/12
Tag:Deutschland; Fahrer; Geschwindigkeit; Landstraße; Sicherheit; Straßenentwurf; Unfallverhütung; Verhalten; Überholen
Accident prevention; Behaviour; Driver; Germany; Highway design; Overtaking; Rural road; Safety; Speed
Volltext unter: http://arrbknowlege.com
Source:26th ARRB Conference, Sydney 2014
Institutes:Abteilung Straßenverkehrstechnik / Abteilung Straßenverkehrstechnik
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 62 Ingenieurwissenschaften / 620 Ingenieurwissenschaften und zugeordnete Tätigkeiten
collections:BASt-Beiträge / ITRD Sachgebiete / 82 Unfall und Verkehrsinfrastruktur
BASt-Beiträge / ITRD Sachgebiete / 83 Unfall und Mensch

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