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An Evaluation of Driver Behaviour in Narrow Running Lanes

Funding organisation: Highways Agency


As part of the Highways Agency Outward Facing Research Programme, ITS undertook an experimental evaluation of the impact of lane width and configuration on driving performance using the Leeds Advanced Driving Simulator. The objective of this experiment was to evaluate driver behaviour in narrow running lanes operating under motorway conditions and in particular the relationships between lane width, traffic safety and highway capacity.

The ergonomic performance of narrow running lanes was assessed using measures covering three key domains:

  1. Driver Workload
  2. Driver Performance and Vehicle Control Errors
    1. High levels of speed variation
    2. Poor lateral control
    3. Unacceptably short time headways
    4. Reaction to unexpected events
  3. Compensatory Behaviour
    1. Reduced speed
    2. Increased following distance