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U. S. Department of Transportation
National Highway Traffic Safety Administration


NHTSA People Saving People
DOT HS 808 705

April 1998

Introduction

Background

Method

Findings

Detailed Findings

General Discussion

Specific Issues

APPENDIX A

APPENDIX B

 

List of Tables
1 Composition of Beltway Driver Groups
2 How Participants Use the Beltway
3 Perceived Causes of Beltway Crashes
4 Perceived Causes of Beltway Crashes - Commercial Drivers
5 Responses to Aggressiveness Screening Questions

List of Figures
1 Questionnaire Responses - General vs. Aggressive Drivers


      

 

Pattern of Beltway Use

As shown in the following table, 33 of the participants in the current groups drive to work, although not necessarily on the Beltway or necessarily during peak hours. Only 25 of the participants in the current groups were on the Beltway during peak commuting hours. Counted in the number that do not drive to work are people who work at home, whether as a homemaker or in a home-based business. Although the ratio of participants who drive to work is reversed compared to the 1994 groups, it does not necessarily represent a change in commuting habits. It may be an artifact of the times the sessions were held. There was no afternoon session in the 1997 wave. The ratio using the Beltway during peak commuting hours is just about the same in the 1997 groups as it was in 1994.

Table 2. How Participants Use the Beltway.

General Drivers Aggressive Drivers
Characteristics May 6
6:00 p.m.
(N=11)
May 6
8:00 p.m.
(N=11)
May 7
6:00 p.m.
(N=10)
May 7
8:00 p.m.
(N=10)
May 8
6:00 p.m.
(N-10)
Total
(N=52)
Drive to Work? Yes
No
6
5
6
5
9
1
6
4
6
4
33
19
On-Peak Beltway Use? Yes
No
5
6
5
6
6
4
5
5
4
6
25
27
Beltway Segment Northern
Eastern
Southwestern
Northwestern
7
2
6
6
4
3
6
3
5
1
6
4
7
2
2
4
8
2
3
6
31
10
23
23
Number of Segments One
Two
Three
Four
6
1
3
1
7
3
1
0
5
4
1
0
6
3
1
0
4
3
3
0
28
14
9
1

More of the participants drive on the Northern segment of the Beltway (between I-270 and I-95 to Baltimore) than on any other. This is consistent with the 1994 study. Also as in 1994, relatively few of the current participants drive the Eastern segment (between I-95 from Baltimore and the Wilson Bridge). For unknown reasons the proportions of participants who drive on the Northwestern segment (between I-270 and I-66) was somewhat lower among 1997 participants (44 percent) than the 1994 groups (75 percent). Travel on the Southwestern segment (between the Wilson Bridge and I-66) was somewhat higher in the 1997 groups (44 percent) than it was in 1994 (23 percent).

As in 1994, the North American Van Lines truck drivers were on all sections of the Beltway depending on the locations of pick-ups and deliveries. One of the Roadway drivers used the Southwestern segment of the Beltway all day, every day. The others ran only the short segment between Van Dorn and I-95 South. Skippy's Trucking drivers traveled both Western segments of the Beltway and also the Northern segment in Maryland. Sea Cap, which participated in the 1994 groups, covered all of the DC area from their terminal near Baltimore.