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A field investigation of red-light-running in Shanghai, China

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Red-Light-Running (RLR) is the major cause of severe injury crashes at signalized intersections for both China and the US. As several studies have been conducted to identify the influencing factors of RLR behavior in the US, no similar studies exist in China. To fill this gap, this study was conducted to identify the key factors that affect RLR and compare the contributing factors between US and China. Data were collected through field observations and video recordings; four intersections in Shanghai were selected as the study sites. Both RLR drivers and comparison drivers, who had the opportunity to run the light but did not, were identified. Based on the collected data, preliminary analyses were firstly conducted to identify the features of the RLR and comparison groups. It was determined that: around 57% of RLR crossed the stop line during the 0–0.4 second time interval after red-light onset, and the numbers of red light violators decreased as the time increased; among the RLR vehicles, 38% turned left and 62% went straight; and at the onset of red, about 88% of RLR vehicles were in the middle of a vehicle platoon. Furthermore, in order to compare the RLR group and non-RLR group, two types of logistic regression models were developed. The ordinary logistic regression model was developed to identify the significant variables from the aspects of driver characteristics, driving conditions, and vehicle types. It was concluded that RLR drivers are more likely to be male, have local license plates, and are driving passenger vehicles but without passengers. Large traffic volume also increased the likelihood of RLR. However, the ordinary logistic regression model only considers influencing factors at the vehicle level: different intersection design and signal settings may also have impact on RLR behaviors. Therefore, in order to account for unobserved heterogeneity among different types of intersections, a random effects logistic regression model was adopted. Through the model comparisons, it has been identified that the model goodness-of-fit was substantially improved through considering the heterogeneity effects at intersections. Finally, benefits of this study and the analysis results were discussed.

Wang X, Yu R, Zhong C. A field investigation of red-light-running in Shanghai, China[J]. Transportation Research Part F Traffic Psychology & Behaviour, 2016, 37:144-153.

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