A New Approach to Assess the Influence of Road Roughness on Driver Speed Behavior Based on Driving Simulator Tests

Mariano Pernetti, Mauro D’Apuzzo, Francesco Galante


Vehicle speed is one of main parameters describing driver behavior and it is of paramount importance as it affects the travel safety level. Speed is, in turn, affected by several factors among which in-vehicle vibration may play a significant role. Most of speed reducing traffic calming countermeasures adopted nowadays rely on vertical vibration level perceived by drivers that is based on the dynamic interaction between the vehicle and the road roughness. On the other hand, this latter has to be carefully monitored and controlled as it is a key parameter in pavement managements systems since it influences riding comfort, pavement damage and Vehicle Operating Costs. There is therefore the need to analyse the trade-off between safety requirements and maintenance issues related to road roughness level. In this connection, experimental studies aimed at evaluating the potential of using road roughness in mitigating drivers’ speed in a controlled environment may provide added value in dealing with this issue. In this paper a new research methodology making use of a dynamic driver simulator operating at the TEST Laboratory in Naples is presented in order to investigate the relationship between the driver speed behavior on one hand, and the road roughness level, road alignment and environment, vehicle characteristics on the other. Following an initial calibration phase, preliminary results seem fairly promising since they comply with the published data derived from scientific literature.


driver speed behavior; driving simulator; road roughness.

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DOI: 10.3846/bjrbe.2016.17


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