Enhancing Vehicle Sensing for Traffic Safety Performance Improvements Using Roadside LiDAR Data in RITI Communities

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) developed its 2015-2018 strategic plans to identify four strategic focus areas including “Safety 1st” culture and comprehensive data utilization and leveraging technology. Compared to crashes occurring in urban areas, traffic crashes in Rural, Isolated, Tribal, or Indigenous (RITI) communities are associated with a series of significant attributes, such as high speed, low seatbelt usage rate, poor weather and pavement conditions, inferior lighting conditions, considerable distractions, etc. Recent technological advancements in computer vision algorithms and data acquisition devices have greatly facilitated the research to enhance traffic sensing for traffic safety performance improvements. Significant research efforts have been devoted to developing and deploying new technologies to better detect, sense, and monitor traffic dynamics and rapidly identify crashes in RITI communities. This project aims to develop a set of deep learning-based traffic object recognition from roadside Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) data to automatically detect vehicle dynamic characteristics, such as vehicle speed, headway, and spacing, and then track vehicle trajectories in real-time to better identify and predict traffic crashes to mitigate crash injuries with minimum response time. Currently, a majority of the existing methodologies applied deep learning-based techniques, especially Convolutional Neural Networks (CNNs), for traffic detection and tracking on autonomous driving datasets. Very fewer studies were focused on deep learning-based traffic detection using roadside LiDAR data, partially due to the lack of publicly available roadside LiDAR datasets for network training and testing. In this study, the research team plans to develop a novel framework based on CNNs and LiDAR data for automated vehicle detection. It leverages the domain knowledge of CNNs trained on large-scale autonomous driving datasets for vehicle detection from roadside LiDAR data. The project results will better use roadside LiDAR data to monitor traffic operation flow conditions and identify crashes dynamically and help transportation agencies improve traffic safety performance developing timely countermeasures in the States of Alaska, Washington, Idaho, and Hawaii.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $45470
    • Contract Numbers:


    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Center for Safety Equity in Transportation

      University of Alaska Fairbanks
      Fairbanks, AK  United States  99775

      Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology

      University Transportation Centers Program
      Department of Transportation
      Washington, DC  United States  20590
    • Managing Organizations:

      Center for Safety Equity in Transportation

      University of Alaska Fairbanks
      Fairbanks, AK  United States  99775
    • Performing Organizations:

      University of Hawaii, Manoa

      College of Engineering, Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
      2540 Dole Street, Holmes Hall 383
      Honolulu, HI  United States  96822
    • Principal Investigators:

      Zhang, Guohui

      Ma, David T

    • Start Date: 20220401
    • Expected Completion Date: 20230731
    • Actual Completion Date: 0
    • USDOT Program: University Transportation Centers

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01842509
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Center for Safety Equity in Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: 69A3551747129
    • Files: UTC, RIP
    • Created Date: Apr 14 2022 9:49PM