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Publication Number:  FHWA-HRT-16-055    Date:  January 2016
Publication Number: FHWA-HRT-16-055
Date: January 2016

 

User-Friendly Traffic Incident Management (TIM) Program Benefit-Cost Estimation Tool

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FHWA-HRT-16-055 Report Cover Image

FOREWORD

Traffic incidents contribute significantly to the deterioration of the level of service of both freeways and arterials. Traffic Incident Management (TIM) programs have been introduced worldwide with the aim of mitigating the impact of traffic incidents on safety and roadway performance. These programs support quick incident response, thereby shortening incident duration, and control traffic demand around the incident scene. Some TIM programs can be costly to taxpayers; thus, it is important to evaluate their benefits and determine the associated return on investment. Although benefit-cost (BC) estimation studies have been conducted for numerous TIM programs, these studies employ a wide range of estimation methodologies and monetary equivalent conversion factors. Consequently, resulting BC ratio estimates vary widely and have been shown to be sensitive to these choices. Moreover, these studies can be quite costly. Therefore, this report develops a TIM-BC tool with standardized methodology that can be universally and equitably employed in BC ratio estimation for different TIM programs, which is essential to creating consistency and, therefore, greater confidence in the validity of the results. With access to the methodology in the form of a simple-to-use, less data-intensive tool, TIM programs and taxpayers alike can benefit from cost-effective evaluations.

Notice

This document is disseminated under the sponsorship of the U.S. Department of Transportation in the interest of information exchange. The U.S. Government assumes no liability for the use of the information contained in this document.

The U.S. Government does not endorse products or manufacturers. Trademarks or manufacturers' names appear in this report only because they are considered essential to the objective of the document.

Quality Assurance Statement

The Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) provides high-quality information to serve Government, industry, and the public in a manner that promotes public understanding. Standards and policies are used to ensure and maximize the quality, objectivity, utility, and integrity of its information. FHWA periodically reviews quality issues and adjusts its programs and processes to ensure continuous quality improvement.

 

Technical Report Documentation Page

1. Report No.

FHWA-HRT-16-055

2. Government Accession No. 3 Recipient's Catalog No.
4. Title and Subtitle

User-Friendly Traffic Incident Management (TIM) Program Benefit-Cost Estimation Tool

5. Report Date

January 2016

6. Performing Organization Code
7. Author(s)

Jiaqi Ma, Elise Miller-Hooks, Mersedeh Tariverdi, Taylor Lochrane, Fang Zhou, David Prentiss, Kathleen Hudgins, Paul Jodoin, Zhitong Huang, Margaret Hailemariam

8. Performing Organization Report No.

 

9. Performing Organization Name and Address

Leidos, Inc.
11251 Roger Bacon Drive
Reston, VA 20190

10. Work Unit No. (TRAIS)

11. Contract or Grant No.

DTFH61-12-D-00020

12. Sponsoring Agency Name and Address

Office of Operations Research and Development
Federal Highway Administration
6300 Georgetown Pike
McLean, VA 22101-2296

13. Type of Report and Period Covered

Project Final Report

14. Sponsoring Agency Code

HRDO-20

15. Supplementary Notes

The Contracting Officer's Technical Representative (COTR): Taylor Lochrane

16. Abstract

Traffic incidents contribute significantly to the deterioration of the level of service of both freeways and arterials. Traffic Incident Management (TIM) programs have been introduced worldwide with the aim of mitigating the impact of traffic incidents on safety and roadway performance. These programs support quick incident response, thereby shortening incident duration, and control traffic demand around the incident scene. Some TIM programs can be costly to taxpayers, thus, it is important to evaluate their benefits and determine the associated return on investment. Although benefit-cost (BC) estimation studies have been conducted for numerous TIM programs, these studies employ a wide range of estimation methodologies and monetary equivalent conversion factors. Consequently, resulting BC ratio estimates vary widely and have been shown to be sensitive to these choices. Moreover, these studies can be quite costly. This report develops a TIM-BC tool with standardized methodology that can be universally and equitably employed in BC ratio estimation for different TIM programs, which is essential to creating consistency and, therefore, greater confidence in the validity of the results. With access to the methodology in the form of a simple-to-use, less data-intensive tool, TIM programs and taxpayers alike can benefit from cost-effective evaluations. A New York case study compares the effectiveness of implementing three selected TIM strategies, namely: safety service patrol, driver removal laws, and dispatch colocation. The case study also helps in understanding the need for a standardized BC ratio estimation tool and the effectiveness of the developed TIM-BC tool.

17. Key Words

research, safety, traffic incident management, safety service patrol, benefit cost analysis

18. Distribution Statement

No restrictions.

19. Security Classification
(of this report)

Unclassified

20. Security Classification
(of this page)

Unclassified

21. No. of Pages

59

22. Price
Form DOT F 1700.7 (8-72) Reproduction of completed page authorized

SI* (Modern Metric) Conversion Factors

TABLE OF CONTENTS

LIST OF FIGURES

LIST OF TABLES

List of Acronyms
AIC Akaike information criterion
ARL Authority removal laws
BC Benefit-Cost
BIC Bayesian information criterion
CAD Computer aided dispatch
CHART Coordinatated Highways Action Response Team
COM Component object module
DC Dispatch colocation
DMS Dynamic message signs
DOT Department of Transportation
D/P-E Duration/proportion-based estimation
DRL Driver removal laws
EMS Emergency medical services
FHWA Federal Highway Administration
FFS Free-flow speed
HAR Highway advisory radio
HDV Heavy-duty vehicles
HOT High occupancy toll
HOV High occupancy vehicle
ITS Intelligent transportation systems
LBD Look back distance
LDV Light-duty vehicles
MOE Measures of effectivenss
NIMS/ICS National Incident Management System/National Incident Command System
NUG National unified goal
PTSA Preestablished Towing Service Agreements
SDRF Safety Distance Reduced Factor
SHRP2 Second Strategic Highway Research Program
SQCG Shared quick-clearance goals
SSP Safety Service Patrols
SSP-BC Safety Service Patrols Benefit-Cost
ST SHRP2 Training
TAC Total annual cost
TDc Total travel delay of cars
TDt Total travel delay of trucks
TIM Traffic incident management
TIM-BC Traffic incident management benefit-cost
TMC Transportatioan management centers
TOC Traffic operations centers
TTF TIM Task Forces
Vplph Vehicles per lane per hour
VMT Vehicle miles traveled

 

 

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