Connecting Dangerous Driving to Vulnerable Road User Safety

Nationwide and within Kansas there has been an increase in crashes affecting non-motorized travelers. Given the potential of these crashes to result in severe injuries for the non-motorized traveler, there is an urgent need to explore policies that might better protect Kansans who travel on foot or by bicycle. Traditional research has focused on creating safer infrastructure for non-motorized users. This project proposes a different approach, namely a focus on dangerous drivers. By comparing driving histories of motorists who do and who do not crash into non-motorized users, it is possible to statistically assess whether these two populations are distinct. Any distinction offers potential avenues for enforcement and charging policies that might better curb the behaviors of dangerous drivers and better protect non-motorized travelers. This proposed project will employ statistical techniques to assess whether past driving history is predictive of dangerous driving vis a vis nonmotorized traveler. Identifying any statistical difference between a control and treatment group opens up potential new policy interventions. This project will carefully assess any differences and, if any are found, propose policies that might reduce associated risk to non-motorized travelers. Task 1: Literature review on driver history and pedestrian crash risk. A history of driving charges has been found to be predictive of increasing the likelihood of a motorist hitting a bicyclist or pedestrian. This literature review will broadly explore the research that has used statistical methods to explore charge history to identify problematic drivers with a specific focus on application of this concern to motorists who subsequently hit cyclists and pedestrians. This review will also consider interventions used to reduce dangerous driving. Task 2: Data collection/cleaning of driver charge records This research uses crash data records to identify motorists involved in crashes with pedestrians and cyclists. A sample of charge histories is then drawn that includes both those identified motorists and a control set of other motorists in Kansas. This task includes pulling the crash records, pulling the charge records, and ensuring the sufficiency of these data for the subsequent analysis. Task 3: Descriptive statistics on driver history records This task explores the characteristics of motorists involved in bicycle and pedestrian crashes to provide aggregate information on their demographics and charge histories. Similar descriptive are generated for motorists not involved in bicycle crashes and for motorists involved in pedestrian and bicycle crashes who are charged for that incident. Task 4: Inferential statistics regarding the likelihood of being charged for crashes involving bicyclists and pedestrians and the likelihood for history of charges being predictive of being involved in a crash with pedestrians and cyclists. This task includes two key statistical explorations to identify what, if any, traits increase the chance of motorists involved in pedestrian or bicycle crashes being charged in those incidents and to quantify to what extent a history of charges is associated with an increased likelihood of being a motorist involved in a crash with pedestrians or bicyclists. The specific statistical methods used will be determined once the data are collected and cleaned but will likely include some combination of discriminant analysis and match case-control analysis. Task 5: Report writing and associated presentations This task will document the research process and present its findings. These findings will include recommendations of potential intervention policies to improve road safety by targeting dangerous drivers. These strategies are likely to include policies appropriate for both state and local implementation.


    • English


    • Status: Active
    • Funding: $67334
    • Contract Numbers:

      K-TRAN: KSU-24-4



    • Sponsor Organizations:

      Kansas Department of Transportation

      Eisenhower State Office Building
      700 SW Harrison Street
      Topeka, KS  United States  66603-3754
    • Performing Organizations:

      Kansas State University Transportation Center

      Kansas State University
      Department of Civil Engineering
      Manhattan, KS  United States  66506
    • Principal Investigators:

      Fitzsimmons, Eric

    • Start Date: 20230815
    • Expected Completion Date: 20241115
    • Actual Completion Date: 0

    Subject/Index Terms

    Filing Info

    • Accession Number: 01894619
    • Record Type: Research project
    • Source Agency: Kansas Department of Transportation
    • Contract Numbers: K-TRAN: KSU-24-4, RE-0877-01, C2226
    • Files: RIP, STATEDOT
    • Created Date: Sep 26 2023 3:36PM