Driver Attitudes and Behaviors at Intersections and Potential Effectiveness of Engineering Countermeasures

Battelle Human Factors Transportation Center, Federal Highway Administration

Four focus groups were conducted at each of three test sites: Washington, DC; Chicago, IL; and Seattle, WA. At each site, the four groups corresponded to the age/gender characteristics identified as important to this project. The four groups were:

  • 18- to 35-year-old female drivers only.
  • 18- to 35-year-old male drivers only.
  • 35- to 55-year-old drivers of both genders.
  • 65+-year-old drivers of both genders.

At each site, the focus groups took place over two separate evenings, with two focus groups conducted per evening. A total of 119 individuals participated in the focus groups. The effort focused on identifying driver attitudes and behaviors with respect to four intersection scenarios: (1) red-light running, (2) left turns at busy intersections, (3) turning left onto a major road with moderate traffic, and (4) rear-end crashes. For each of these four scenarios, results and conclusions relevant to the following key questions are developed and presented:

  • What are drivers most likely to do in this scenario?
  • Why do drivers engage in these behaviors?
  • What engineering countermeasures have the most promise for improving traffic safety?

Filed in: Engineering, Education, Crashes and Safety

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