Center for Injury Research and Prevention

Near Crash Characteristics Among Risky Drivers Using the SHRP2 Naturalistic Driving Study

TitleNear Crash Characteristics Among Risky Drivers Using the SHRP2 Naturalistic Driving Study
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2020
AuthorsSeacrist T, Douglas EC, Hannan C, Rogers R, Belwadi A, Loeb H
JournalJournal of Safety Research
Date Published04/2020
Type of ArticleJournal
KeywordsNaturalistic driving, Near crashes, Risky drivers, SHRP2

Problem: Previous research have focused extensively on crashes, however near crashes provide additional data on driver errors leading to critical events as well as evasive maneuvers employed to avoid crashes. The Strategic Highway Research Program 2 (SHRP2) Naturalistic Driving Study contains extensive data on real world driving and offers a reliable methodology to study near crashes. The current study utilized the SHRP2 database to compare the rate and characteristics associated with near crashes among risky drivers. Methods: A subset from the SHRP2 database consisting of 4,818 near crashes for teen (16–19 yrs), young adult (20–24 yrs), adult (35–54 yrs), and older (70+ yrs) drivers was used. Near crashes were classified into seven incident types: rear-end, road departure, intersection, head-on, side-swipe, pedestrian/cyclist, and animal. Near crash rates, incident type, secondary tasks, and evasive maneuvers were compared across age groups. For rear-end near crashes, near crash severity, max deceleration, and time-to-collision at braking were compared across age. Results: Near crash rates significantly decreased with increasing age (p < 0.05). Young drivers exhibited greater rear-end (p < 0.05) and road departure (p < 0.05) near crashes compared to adult and older drivers. Intersection near crashes were the most common incident type among older drivers. Evasive maneuver type did not significantly vary across age groups. Near crashes exhibited a longer time-to-collision at braking (p < 0.01) compared to crashes. Summary: These data demonstrate increased total near crash rates among young drivers relative to adult and older drivers. Prevalence of specific near crash types also differed across age groups. Timely execution of evasive maneuvers was a distinguishing factor between crashes or near crashes. Practical Applications: These data can be used to develop more targeted driver training programs and help OEMs optimize ADAS to address the most common errors exhibited by risky drivers.