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Evaluation of the Scottsdale Loop 101 automated speed enforcement demonstration program

By Kangwon Shin, Simon Washington and Ida van Schalkwyk


Speeding is recognized as a major contributing factor in traffic crashes. In order to reduce speed-related crashes, the city of Scottsdale, Arizona implemented the first fixed-camera photo speed enforcement program (SEP) on a limited access freeway in the US. The 9-month demonstration program spanning from January 2006 to October 2006 was implemented on a 6.5 mile urban freeway segment of Arizona State Route 101 running through Scottsdale. This paper presents the results of a comprehensive analysis of the impact of the SEP on speeding behavior, crashes, and the economic impact of crashes. The impact on speeding behavior was estimated using generalized least square estimation, in which the observed speeds and the speeding frequencies during the program period were compared to those during other periods. The impact of the SEP on crashes was estimated using 3 evaluation methods: a before-and-after (BA) analysis using a comparison group, a BA analysis with traffic flow correction, and an empirical Bayes BA analysis with time-variant safety. The analysis results reveal that speeding detection frequencies (speeds> or =76 mph) increased by a factor of 10.5 after the SEP was (temporarily) terminated. Average speeds in the enforcement zone were reduced by about 9 mph when the SEP was implemented, after accounting for the influence of traffic flow. All crash types were reduced except rear-end crashes, although the estimated magnitude of impact varies across estimation methods (and their corresponding assumptions). When considering Arizona-specific crash related injury costs, the SEP is estimated to yield about $17 million in annual safety benefits

Topics: 111700 PUBLIC HEALTH AND HEALTH SERVICES, 150700 TRANSPORTATION AND FREIGHT SERVICES, 170100 PSYCHOLOGY, Safety, Speeding, Automated speed enforcement, Before-after, Empirical Bayes analysis, Freeway safety
Publisher: Elsevier
Year: 2009
DOI identifier: 10.1016/j.aap.2008.12.011
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