Adverse weather can reduce visibility and road surface friction and thus increase crash frequency and injury severity. However, drivers may compensate for higher crash risk by reducing speeds, maintaining safe spacing, and driving more carefully. The impacts of adverse weather and its interactions with driver and roadway characteristics on the occurrence and injury severity of selected crash types are analyzed. Single-vehicle, two-vehicle sideswipe, and two-vehicle rear-end collisions on limited-access roadways are considered. To analyze differential impacts of adverse weather on crash type, binary probit models are estimated for single-vehicle versus the two types of two-vehicle crashes, and for rear-ends versus sideswipes. To analyze injury severity, ordered probit models are estimated. The 1990-1995 Highway Safety Information System (HSIS) database for North Carolina was used for analysis. The results indicate that, for the selected crash types, drivers appear to compensate for increased injury risks in that in adverse weather crashes are more frequent but injuries are less severe. Some implications for advanced weather systems are discussed.
Khattak, A.J., P. Kantor, and F.M. Council. Role of Adverse Weather in Key Crash Types on Limited-Access: Roadways Implications for Advanced Weather Systems. In Transportation Research Record: Journal of the Transportation Research Board, No. 1621, Transportation Research Board, National Research Council, Washington, D.C., 1998, pp. 10-15.