Many books focus on individual differences and how those relate to traffic safety such as accident proneness, gender differences, age, alcohol, and the effects of drugs. Others focus on the safety effects regarding the vehicle such as airbags, anti-lock brakes, navigation systems, intelligent cruise control and other new gadgets coming to the vehicle. Even though these topics are undoubtedly important for traffic safety, this book takes a unique approach as it focuses solely on the road environment. Designing Safe Road Systems provides the background for those who want to know more about the effects of road design on driving behaviour. It uses a systems approach to allow a better understanding of why and in what circumstances drivers may commit errors. This understanding will ultimately lead to road systems that prevent (fatal) errors from occurring. The book contains an overview of the current models and theories about human performance and human behaviour in traffic that are relevant for all those involved in designing safe road systems. The central theme of this book is how design principles can reduce the probability of an error while driving. The authors demonstrate how knowledge of human factors helps a road authority to better understand how road users behave. They argue that in many cases the design of the environment can be further adjusted to human capabilities, and that safety should be considered a system property to be built into the road system.
’This is a book which has proved to be a very valuable source of information for me and will certainly aid many more transport psychology / ergonomics researchers. It would not be far-fetched to say that Designing Safe Road Systems: A Human Factor Perspective has the potential to act as a key reference for transport engineering or similar modules at undergraduate or postgraduate levels. It serves the need for numerous researchers to develop a systemic view of the road and in doing so explains the effects of road design on driving behaviour and uses this understanding to put forward ways to design so-called smart roads�.’ Ergonomics, Vol 56 No 2, 2013
Contents: Foreword; Introduction; Self-explaining roads and traffic system; Resilience to failure and breakdown; The performance of road users: hierarchical task levels; Workload management; Information carriers meet basic ergonomic principles; Individual information elements are consistent and uniform within their context; Risk averse side effects of measures; Motivational aspects; Variation in performance; Communicating with the road user; Summary and conclusions; Index.