College of Computing, Engineering & Construction
Master of Science in Civil Engineering (MSCE)
NACO controlled Corporate Body
University of North Florida. School of Engineering
Dr. Thobias Sando
Dr. Christopher Brown
Dr. Brian Kopp
Dr. Murat Tiryakioglu
Dr. Mark Tumeo
Merging from on-ramps to mainline traffic is one of the most challenging driving maneuvers on freeways. The challenges are further heightened for older drivers, as they are known to have longer perception-reaction times, larger acceptance gaps, and slower acceleration rates. In this research, VISSIM, a microscopic traffic simulation software, was used to evaluate the influence of the aging drivers on the operations of a typical diamond interchange. First, drivers were recorded on video cameras as they negotiated joining the mainline traffic from an on-ramp acceleration lane at two sites along I-75 in Southwest Florida. Several measures of effectiveness were collected including speeds, gaps, and location of entry to the mainline lanes. This information was used as either model input or for verification purposes. Two VISSIM models were developed for each site – one for the existing conditions and verification, and another for a sensitivity analysis, varying the percentage of older drivers and Level of Service (from A to E), to determine their influence on ramp operational characteristics. According to the results, there was a significant difference in driving behavior between older, middle-aged, and younger drivers, based on the measures of effectiveness analyzed in this study. Additionally, as the level of service and percentage of older adult motorists increased, longer queues were observed with slower speeds on the acceleration lanes and the right-most travel lane of the mainline traffic.
Lwambagaza, Lina, "Modeling Older Driver Behavior on Freeway Merging Ramps" (2016). UNF Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 646.