Crash Characteristics at Work ZonesAuthor/Presenter: Garber, Nicholas J.; Zhao, Ming
A clear understanding of work zone crashes will enhance the selection of the appropriate measures that can minimize the negative impacts of work zones. This study investigated the characteristics of work zone crashes that occurred in Virginia between 1996 and 1999. The information on each crash was categorized as being in one of five areas of a typical work zone: advance warning area, transition area, longitudinal buffer area, activity area, and termination area. An analysis of the percentage distributions was then carried out with respect to area in work, severity, type of collision, and type of highway. The proportionality test was used to determine significant differences at the 5 percent significance level. Selected crash characteristics, such as the proportions of single- and multi-vehicle crashes, were compared for work zone and non-work zone crashes. The results indicated that the activity area of the work zone was the predominant location for work zone crashes regardless of highway type and the rear-end crashes were the predominant type of crash. The results also indicated that the proportion of sideswipe same direction crashes in the transition area was significantly higher than in the advance warning area and the work zone crashes involved a higher proportion of multi-vehicle crashes and fatal crashes than did non-work zone crashes.