Effectiveness of Crash Fact/Safety Message Signs on Dynamic Message Signs

Driver behavior is the main contributor to crashes. Studies show that more than 90% of fatal crashes are associated with driver behavior. While engineering solutions play a key role in mitigating crash causes, a focus on changing behaviors of road users is critical to reducing crash occurrence. Dynamic Message Signs (DMS) displaying fatality statistics/safety messages are intended to raise awareness and emphasize the importance of focused driving and minimize potential driver errors that may result in a traffic crash. In Michigan, such messages are used intermittently and on a specific region basis. Also, there is no known evidence beyond anecdotal whether displaying such messages helps in changing driver behaviors and ultimately reducing crashes. Why are various states utilizing messages when they acknowledged not having seen an immediate impact on the motoring public? Are such messages being placed with a goal of education first? There is a need to determine the appropriate measures of effectiveness of Crash Facts/Safety Messages displayed on DMS on crashes, driver behavior and the overall safety culture, and to determine how to implement such a communication tool in ways that maximizes its impact.


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    • Status: Active
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Michigan Department of Transportation

      8885 Ricks Road, P.O. Box 30049
      Lansing, MI  United States  48909
    • Performing Organizations:

      Michigan State University, East Lansing

      Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering
      Institute for Community Development
      East Lansing, MI  United States  48824-1226
    • Start Date: 20190315
    • Expected Completion Date: 20210630
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01774510
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Michigan Department of Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: 2019‐0295
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Jun 21 2021 11:04AM