Roadwork Detouring and Crash Mapping

Documents Available
Quarterly Report March 2007

Primary Investigator
Teresa Adams, Director
Midwest Regional University Transportation Center
1415 Engineering Drive
2205 Engineering Hall
Madison, WI 53706
adams[at]engr.wisc.edu

Project Objective
Making it easier to map information and inform decision Making,

  • Roadways-internet accessible maps and schedules for road maintenance and construction projects,
  • Crash-“spot maps” of local crash data from the MV4000 and providing some analysis tools.

Project Abstract
Most local roadwork is signed but not formally detoured-roadwork will provide end-users with access to information. Authorized local content providers would enter scheduled maintenance or construction work in a web-based template. When the information is added or update, an email could automatically be sent to local law enforcement, EMS, fire department, the school district for bus routing, and other interested subscribers including local shippers, chambers of commerce, and local media. End-users could identify an alternate route in advance. By statute, each county has a Traffic Safety Commission that meets quarterly and reviews the crash summary of fatalities, injuries, and reported property damage-usually presented on ‘spot maps. Wisconsin’s deployment of the PC/scanner-based and GIS compatible Badger TRaCS will be a useful tool at the state and local level. However, it will likely take several years before full utilization is achieved. In the meantime, local jurisdictions have increasingly limited resources-both for adopting new technologies and for prioritizing decision-making. For some jurisdictions, the project that we are proposing may be a relatively short-term interim step. For others, it may provide a cost-effective long-term solution. We believe that it would be better than the death of resources that are currently available in many communities. We all share the same goals-to provide local decision-makers with the best possible resources to meet their circumstances-and, as John Corbin, WisDOT Traffic Operations, explained in a recent discussion, our proposed project could provide a missing layer of information. We propose to develop a second maps.google application to serve this purpose. Participating Police and Sheriff’s Departments could enter selected data from the MV4000 WI Motor Vehicle Accident Report. The resulting maps could incorporate other hybrid data layers including traffic counts, WISLR pavement conditions, crash history, and may include future links to information like weather conditions at the time of the crash. These more detailed maps may make it easier to see ‘accident-prone’ road segments and help identify and prioritize safety improvements.

Task Descriptions

  1. Roadways:
    • Task 1 – Identify and hire on or more local programmers.
    • Task 2 – Begin aggressive schedule to incorporate proposed functionality into existing prototype.
    • Task 3 – From an advisory group for feedback and guidance representatives could be drawn from county highway departments and municipal public works departments, law enforcement, fire departments, EMS, school districts, local shippers, chambers of commerce, and local media.
    • Task 4 – Once additional functionality has been incorporate, demo the prototype and gather feedback; a survey may also be conducted to gather additional input related to information dissemination and public access.
    • Task 5 – Develop documentation and training materials for content providers and an information and marketing campaign to introduce the prototype to the public.
    • Task 6 – Several other hybrid layers, including information about state and locally designated bike routes, locally permitted ATV use on the right-of-way, areas with other high-use slow-moving vehicles, and other information could be added later in an effort to alert drivers to other uses sharing the roads.
    • Task 7 – Software programmers are experimenting with providing downloadable files that can be used in GPS units like Tom-Tom or the Garmin handhelds-this would be a potential future enhancement.
    • Task 8 – If feasible-Sudhish Verma-the project’s technical lead to date, will continue to volunteer, working remotely from Texas and the budget may fund bringing him to WI for an information sharing visit, if appropriate.
  2. Crash:
    • Task 1 – From an advisory group to provide feedback and guidance as the effort proceeds. Two to three meetings will be held to coincide with meetings of the roadwork/detour project. Representatives would be drawn from the local law enforcement community and other stakeholder groups.
    • Task 2 – The Survey that was used in the five-count SWWRPC region would be distributed to a broader state-wide audience.
    • Task 3 – Based on the input received, one or more programmers will work to incorporate identified functionalities.
    • Task 4 – user documentation and training materials will be developed and presentation swill be made to potential partner groups. The Wisconsin Counties Association has expressed interest in these projects and groups like this may provide opportunities to present the project prototypes and solicit input.

Project Information

  • Milestones, Dates: 9/1/2005 to 9/30/2006
  • Budget: $7,043, Matching Funds & %: ****
  • Student Involvement: One student programmer will be working this project.
  • Modal Orientation: Highway
  • Project ID: 07-02