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National Center for Transit Research » Publications

Evaluation of Rear-end Bus Collisions and Identification of Possible Solutions

(Center Identification Number: 77955) The purpose of this project was to conduct a systematic study of rear-end collisions between motorists and public transit buses. We examined both cases in which the vehicle rear-ended the bus (rear-ended collision) and in which the bus rear-ended the vehicle (rear-ending collision); the term rear-end collision includes both types of collision. The project had the following objectives: Determine if rear-end collisions are increasing Conduct an assessment to ascertain the prevalence of rear-end collisions Identify conditions that exist when rear-end collisions occur Identify mitigation strategies for agencies that have identified rear-end collisions as a major issue Assess impact of Yield to Bus and pull-out bays on rear-end collisions, and Identify solutions and/or strategies to reduce rear-end collisions. Download the final report. For more information, contact William Morris at wpmorris@cutr.usf.edu or Christopher DeAnnuntis at deannuntis@cutr.usf.edu. … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Final Report Abstracts, FY 2013 Final Reports, FY 2014 Final Reports, Projects, Publications

Analysis of Transit Contracting Models and Proper Incentives for Long-Term Success

(Center Identification Number: 77952) As transit systems are being challenged to operate in the most cost-effective manner, and budgets are being tightened and demand for services increases, there has been renewed interest in the area of contracting for fixed route service in the United States (U.S.). Researchers were tasked to inventory and synthesize previous work in the area of types of transit operating contracts in the U.S. and Europe, assess the benefits and drawbacks of each general approach, and develop situational guidance for Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to help determine if a particular model could be appropriately considered. The investigation began with a review of the literature. Using the National Transit Database for 2011, transit service contracting practices in five states were reviewed, focusing on the monetary nature of the … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Final Report Abstracts, FY 2012 Final Reports, FY 2013 Final Reports, FY 2014 Final Reports, Projects, Publications

Bus Operator Safety – Critical Issues Examination and Model Practices

(Center Identification Number: 77953) In this study, researchers at the National Center for Transit Research performed a multi-topic comprehensive examination of bus operator-related critical safety and personal security issues. The goals of this research effort were to: Identify and discuss the organizational reporting structure related to safety departments and/or function within each of the 30 fixed route public transit agencies in Florida, with input also provided by transit agencies from across the U.S.; Identify and document model policies and practices that address the post event condition of bus operators and their ability to return to duty; Summarize the current practices related to driver’s licenses and criminal history background checks and identify model policies or procedures related to these record checks; Examine the training opportunities being provided by transit agencies and report the successes of these … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Final Report Abstracts, FY 2012 Final Reports, FY 2013 Final Reports, FY 2014 Final Reports, Projects, Publications

Improving the Cost Effectiveness of Financial Incentives in Managing Travel Demand Management (TDM)

(Center Identification Number: 77947) Providing financial incentives to commuters to use alternative modes is a common element of managing transportation demand. Although these incentives have become common during the past two decades as elements of transportation demand management (TDM) programs, limited effort has been made to understand how different ways of providing financial incentives affect commuter mode choice. A better understanding of how these components of incentives affect their impact is critical to enhancing the performance of financial incentives as a TDM strategy. A Web survey was developed and conducted to investigate the feasibility and interest of shifting mode in Florida. A total of 1,031 responses were collected and analyzed. From the survey, researchers found that more than 80 percent of respondents in Florida indicated that they were neither carpooling nor taking … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Final Report Abstracts, FY 2012 Final Reports, FY 2013 Final Reports, Projects, Publications

Improved Traffic Control Measures to Prevent Incorrect Turns at Highway-Rail Grade Crossings

(Center Identification Number: 77950) A number of injuries and fatal collisions have occurred at certain highway-rail grade crossings that are located immediately adjacent to highway intersections, driveways or interstate ramps. Some guide signage, pavement markings, and other traffic control devices present near or at the crossings in the past may have confused drivers and caused them to turn onto the railroad tracks, rather than at the nearby intersections, driveways or ramps. This research found the major contributing causes of incorrect turns onto railroad tracks includes (1) confusing signs and pavement markings near highway-rail crossings, (2) darkness and low visibility near or at highway-rail crossings, (3) following turn instructions from a GPS device onto railroad tracks, (4) skewed highway-rail grade crossings, and (5) driver distraction. Based on the findings from intensive literature … Read entire article »

Filed under: Featured, Final Report Abstracts, FY 2013 Final Reports, Projects, Publications