Title

Traffic safety in surface public transport systems: a synthesis of research

Document Type

Journal Article

Publication Date

2015

Subject Area

mode - bus, mode - rail, mode - bus rapid transit, mode - tram/light rail, planning - safety/accidents, literature review, infrastructure - busway

Keywords

Bus Rapid Transit, Busway, Crash frequency modeling, Light rail transit, Road safety, Tramways

Abstract

While there is a growing body of literature on transit safety, most studies on this topic tend to focus on a single type of transit system or on a single city. There is a need for a better understanding of safety issues across different transit modes and in different geographies in order to help inform city or transit agencies choosing between different transit system design options on the safety implications of their choices. We address this gap by reviewing the existing literature on transit safety for different bus and rail surface transit systems. We found that the main safety issues and common crash types depend more on the geometry of intersections and the corridor layout than on the type of technology used for transit vehicles (i.e. bus or rail) and that these issues are similar across different regions of the world. Furthermore, we found that there is a good understanding of the problems faced by transit systems, and a wide range of suggested countermeasures, but little evidence on the effectiveness of the different countermeasures in reducing target crashes. By taking an approach that cuts across different transit modes, we are also able to suggest solutions from one type of system that could be applicable to another. For example, we point out that Bus Rapid Transit agencies could learn from light rail operations about best practices in managing conflict points between transit vehicles.

Rights

Permission to publish the abstract has been given by SpringerLink, copyright remains with them.