ARSRPE Conference Paper Database

A Probability-based approach for assessing the relationship between road crashes and road surface conditions

Piyatrapoomi, N, Weligamage, J, Bunker, J

Engineering

2007

Skid resistance is a condition parameter characterising the contribution that a road makes to the friction between a road surface and a vehicle tyre. Studies of traffic crash histories around the world have consistently found that a disproportionate number of crashes occur where the road surface has a low level of surface friction and/or surface texture, particularly when the road surface is wet. Various research results have been published over many years and have tried to quantify the influence of skid resistance on accident occurrence and to characterise a correlation between skid resistance and accident frequency. Most of the research studies used simple statistical correlation methods in analysing skid resistance and crash data. Findings from research projects do affirm various levels of correlation between skid resistance and accident occurrence. Studies indicate that the level of skid resistance at critical places such as intersections, curves, roundabouts, ramps and approaches to pedestrian crossings needs to be well maintained. Management of risk is an integral aspect of the Queensland Department of Main Roads (QDMR) strategy for managing its infrastructure assets. The objectives of this paper are to explore current issues of skid resistance in relation to crashes, to provide a framework for a probability-based approach to be adopted by QDMR in assessing the relationship between crash accidents and road surface conditions.