A dynamic lane merge system deployed at a work zone outside Detroit reduced aggressive driving maneuvers.
The DLM system was most effective at peak hour traffic volumes of 3,000 to 3,500 vehicles per hour. The study found that if traffic volumes were consistently below or above these levels the system would have limited effectiveness. With low traffic volumes, merging control would most likely not be needed; and with higher traffic volumes, the resulting queues lengths would be so long that the flashers would operate continuously and the automated system would not be needed.
Probe vehicle runs and traffic data were collected by Michigan DOT and Wayne State University. The following impacts were highlighted.
- During the afternoon peak period, the average number of aggressive driving maneuvers per travel time run decreased from 2.88 to 0.55. During the morning peak period there was no change.
- During the four months prior to activation, an average of 1.2 crashes per month occurred. For the two month period the system was active, no crashes were reported.
- Michigan DOT observed less traffic disruption due to queuing and a decrease in variance between vehicle speeds.
Author: Scriba, Tracy, and Tim Luttrell
Correspondence with Jeff Grossklaus, Michigan DOT (November 2006 and January 2007)
Published By: Federal Highway Administration, U.S. DOT
Prepared by SAIC for the U.S. DOT
Source Date: October 2004
EDL Number: 14011URL: http://ntl.bts.gov/lib//jpodocs/repts_te/14011.htm
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