Actions Preceding Collisions Involving Transit Motorbuses and Applicability of Connected Vehicle Solutions

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 study 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 spatial relationship between vehicles when they collided. The study revealed some prominent characteristics (such as spatial 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, the authors provide recommendations for potential application areas for connected vehicle transit safety.

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