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Risk Factors Associated with High Potential for Serious Crashes

Final Report SPR 771


Crashes are random events and low traffic volumes therefore don’t always make crash hot-spot identification possible. This project has used extensive data collection and analysis for a large sample of Oregon’s low volume roads to develop a risk index that expresses the crash risk for different road geometries and roadside features as well as crash history and traffic exposure. This crash risk index can then be a proactive means of identifying potentially risky locations where safety treatments might be best targeted. The economic analysis completed as part of this effort can be used in conjunction with the risk index when determining which safety treatments may result in the highest return on investment for agency safety improvement funds. This report includes a review of literature related to features effecting crash risk and other past risk index efforts, the data collection and analysis methods used in quantifying risks, the establishment of the crash risk index, an economic feasibility analysis showing which treatments may be the best options for Oregon’s low volume roads, and a few case studies highlighting the use of the crash risk index on three samples of Oregon’s low volume roadways.