AMTID International Conference: Road Safety Audit of Palm Beach Road, Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation


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- Performed road safety audit on 10km stretch of Palm Beach Road for the Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation (NMMC)
- Developed a mathematical model and presented ‘Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads’ at proceedings of Advances in Materials and Techniques for Infrastructure Development (AMTID 2011), NIT Calicut
- Recommended redesigning of a rotary junction which was implemented by the NMMC

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AMTID International Conference: Road Safety Audit of Palm Beach Road, Navi Mumbai Municipal Corporation

  1. 1. Proceedings of International Conference on Advances in Materials and Techniques for Infrastructure Development (AMTID 2011) NIT Calicut, India, 28-30 September 2011. Paper No.: T033 ROAD SAFETY AUDIT FOR INDIAN ROADS Dr. P. Vedagiri1, Jatin Solanki2, and Rahul Ajmera3Abstract:Performing a Road Safety Audit is a proactive approach to safety; factors that couldcontribute to a crash are identified before crashes can occur. Objective of the Road SafetyAudit is to assess projects for potential accident elimination / reduction on the basis of roaduser knowledge, attributes and skills, day/night, wet/dry road conditions. Road Safety Auditscan be viewed as a proactive low-cost approach to improve safety. Safety Audits and countermeasures should be considered as a necessary cost within the project. We take a case study ofthe Palm Beach Road at Navi Mumbai, where the accident rates have been alarming in recenttimes. The study goal was also to provide a generic framework for conducting Road SafetyAudits at other Indian cities in the future. This study serves two purposes, the first is to reportthe findings of Road Safety Audits performed on the case study road, and the second is todocument the lessons learned in the current study that will facilitate future Road Safety Auditsin Indian cities.Keywords: Road Safety Audit, Safety Issues, Accidents, Safety Index.1. INTRODUCTIONRoad transport deserves a high priority compared to other modes of transport like watertransport and air transport, as it can effectively meet the demand for transport arising out ofgrowing economic, social, health, cultural and religious needs of the people. Road transportplays a major role in the continuing rapid development of India‟s economy. Roads in Indiacarry an estimated 60% of freight and 80% of passengers. India has the second largest roadnetwork in the world with over 3.31 million km. Road accidents have earned India a dubiousdistinction. With over 130,000 deaths annually, the country has overtaken China and now hasthe worst road traffic accident rate worldwide.The 56.5 million registered vehicles using the Indian roads have taken a heavy toll on humanlife. Road crashes are a growing worldwide problem. Road systems all over the world aregetting increasingly congested and unsafe with every passing day. Between 1970-71 and2001-02, the total number of registered vehicles in India has increased 31 times. However, theroad length in the same period has increased by only 2.71 times. India has only about 1% ofthe worlds vehicles but accounts for as much as 6% of the worlds accidents. These crasheshave a major impact on the countrys economy, costing an estimated Rs. 300 billion or morethan 3% of Indias GDP every year.___________________________________________________________________________1 Dr. P. Vedagiri , Assistant Professor, Civil Engineering Department, IIT Bombay, Jatin Solanki,4th Year B.Tech Student, Civil Engineering Department, IIT Bombay.3 Rahul Ajmera,4th Year B.Tech Student, Civil Engineering Department, IIT Bombay. 1
  2. 2. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and ConditionsIncidentally, India holds the dubious distinction of registering the highest number of roadaccidents in the world. According to the experts at the National Transportation Planning andResearch Centre (NTPRC) the number of road accidents in India is three times higher thanthat prevailing in developed countries. The number of accidents for 1000 vehicles in India isas high as 35 while the figure ranges from 4 to 10 in developed countries. Urbanization beingworld phenomenon, India along with other less developed countries has not remainedunaffected by the industrial urban revolution. The phenomenal urbanization has resultedsignificant road safety problems. In India alone, the death toll rose to 14 per hour in 2009 asopposed to 13 the previous year. The total number of deaths every year due to road accidentshas now passed the 135,000 mark, according to the latest report of National Crime RecordsBureau (NCRB). The economic loss to the society on account of road accidents is estimatedto be about Rs.3500 crores every year. The involvement of heavy vehicles is very high. About61% accidents occur due to 7.6% of heavy vehicles in the country. The National Highways,which are only 2% in the country account for 25% accidents, 34% of deaths and 28% ofinjuries.Indian road safety situation is ten times worse when compared to the developed countries ofthe world, which leaves much to be done in the field of Road Safety Management. Roadsafety is defined as the absence of crashes, injuries and fatalities. The term "safety" impliesthat there are no occurrences of accidents. This study is an attempt in this direction.2. NEED FOR THE STUDYRoad safety is a serious global problem with more than one life is lost every minute.Accidents are due to culmination of more than one factor. Road user error is identified as themost common factor but engineering measures the road vehicle environment easier to dealwith and reduce road user error and improve road safety situation.An important part of the accident prevention strategy is the Road Safety Audit.AUSTROADS (1994) defines road safety audit as "A formal examination of an existing orfuture road or intersection by an independent audit team. It is a formal examination of a futureroad or traffic project, or an existing road, in which an independent, qualified team looks atthe project‟s crash potential and safety performance”. Road safety audits can be used in anyphase of project development from planning and preliminary engineering, design andconstruction. RSAs can also be used on any sized project from minor rural roads to inter-stateNational Highways. RSAs can be viewed as a proactive low-cost approach to improve safety.Since our roads are designed and constructed by striking a socio-economic balance betweensafety, accessibility, environment, economy and locally available material and skill, RSA maydetermine the shortfall in safety, but may not be able to correct the deficiencies in pavementdesign, drainage, and appropriate space standard etc. The specific objectives of road safetyaudit are :To ensure a high level of safety in road projects, greater safety benefits at lower costare possible when audit occurs early in the planning and design stages, To minimize accidentrisk on the road network, To promote the relevance of road safety engineering in all roaddesign work, To promote the safety of all road users on new and existing roads. 2
  3. 3. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions3. OBJECTIVESThe objective of this study is to undertake a safety audit to identify locations of potentialsafety hazards and to suggest appropriate measures to enhance safety along the road. Accidentprevention is achievable though the normal application of safety principles in planning,design and maintenance of roads. Accident reduction measures are aimed to treat hazardouslocations or sections through the use of appropriate counter measures. Accident preventioncan be further enhanced by the application of the process of Road Safety Auditory. Thescenario in India is completely different from that abroad. Contrary to the road users in mostdeveloped country, road users in India are heterogeneous in nature, ranging from pedestrians,animal-driven carts, bi-cycles, rickshaws, handcarts and tractor trolleys, to various categoriesof two / three wheelers, motor cars, buses, trucks, and multi-axle commercial vehicles etc. Itrequires a proactive approach and a customized treatment to deal with this situation. Adescription of the Road Safety Audit process and its application to a particular road inMumbai is presented in this paper as a case study.4. STEPS IN A ROAD SAFETY AUDITThe distinct steps involved in Road Safety Audit are shown in Fig 1. Checklists have beendesigned for use during each stage of auditing (AUSTROADS, 1994; IHT, 1996). In practice, Reconnaissance Survey & Field Observations Detailed Data Collection On the basis of the field observations, detailed data like road geometry details, accident records and traffic volume data are collected Accident Analysis On the basis of the accident data collected, we perform an accident analysis by comparing various collision and condition diagrams Conduct Road Safety Audit Following the standard guidelines suggested by the Indian Road Congress (IRC) and Australian Road Research board (ARRB), a road safety audit is conducted Identification of Safety Issues Using the results from accident analysis and photographs from field visits, safety issues of the road are highlighted Final Recommendations & Conclusions All the observations and results of the study are tabulated and conclusions are drawn on the study Fig. 1: Steps for a Road Safety Audit 3
  4. 4. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions These checklists have proved very useful as reminders for the auditors, but there is also a risk that they are used too blindly as recipes without sufficient consideration for individual situations. The list needs to be modified for different road conditions like the once in India. What is required is a combination of judgment, skill and systematic working. An exhaustive check list for road safety audit in Indian road condition has been given in Table 1 Table 1. Check list for road safety auditRoad Alignment Intersections Interchanges Signs and Marking and Pedestriansand Cross Lighting Delineation and BicyclistsSection1.Visibility, sight 1.Location 1.Visibility, 1.General Issues 1.Generaldistance 2.Visibility, 2.sight distance 2.General 2.Centerlines, issues2. Design speed sight distance 3.Lanes, signs Issues edge lines, lane 2.Pedestrians3.Speed 3.Signing and 4.shoulders 3.Sign lines 3.Bicyclistslimit/speed marking 5.Signing, legibility Guideposts and 4.Publiczoning 4.Layout and 6.marking, 4.Signs reflectors transport4. Passing „readability‟ 7.delineation 3.Curve5. „Readability‟ (perception) by 8.Pedestrians, warning and(Perception) of drivers bicyclists delineationthe alignment by 5.Pedestrians, 9.Lightingdrivers bicyclists6. Human factors 6.Lighting7. Widths8. Shoulders9. Cross slopes10. Side slopes11. Drains12. Combinationof features 5. A CASE STUDY OF PALM BEACH ROAD, NAVI MUMBAI 5.1. Study Stretch Details The Palm Beach Road is a 10-kilometre-long six-lane road and an up-market residential and commercial road that connects Vashi to Belapur via Nerul running parallel to the Thane creek. The quality of the road, combined with the low density of vehicles has resulted in this road being a dream stretch for motorists coming from congested Mumbai. The road is, actually, designed for driving at 80 km per hour, but for safety reasons, the speed has been pegged down to 60 km per hour. However, the vehicles cruise at a high speed of 100 to 120 km per hour. The internal roads connecting the townships to the road are the trouble spots and the high speed of the moving vehicles is a major cause for concern. Altogether 54 people have died since 2007 on this road that is a major cause for concern and this year, sources said there have been already 14 deaths so far with more than one a half month left for the year to end. The road stretch consist of many features like T junctions (both signalized and un-signalized), curves, water bodies along the road, culverts, flyovers, interchanges etc. 4
  5. 5. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions5.2. Accident Data Collection & AnalysisA comprehensive record of every accident is available at police station in whose jurisdictionthe accident occurs. All the details like the location, date, time, type of vehicle andinjuries/fatalities, etc. are available in their register. IITB Audit team visited the police stationand collected the details. By abstracting this information, we prepare a list of spots at whichthe accidents occur. The pie-chart 1, clearly shows that an alarming majority of accidentsoccurs at Killa Chowk. This is a clear indication that road users face some difficulty in thatregion, that is causing the accidents to occur. The junction must be treated as a priority. Location of Accidents 2% 2% 4% 2% 2% 2% Killa Chowk Diwale Junction 4% Near Dakshin Hotel 2% Agroli Bridge 2% Near J Tower 2% M.N.P. Office 2% Near Vishwakamal Hotel 2% Airoli Bridge Opposite Mahanagar Palikas Office 3% Sector 11 Seweri Opposite Croma Showroom Agrawal Trade Sector 11 69% Vijaya Bank Sector 11 Bhanu Pa Chowk Pie Chart 1: Accident Count Vs Locations 5
  6. 6. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions Type of Accident 2% 25% Serious Fatal Minor 73%Pie Chart 2: Classification of Accident Pie Chart 3: Vehicle InvolvedPie-chart 2 shows that a large majority accidents on the given stretch result in serious injuriesor more. Also, about a quarter of the accidents result in death, which is a very high fatalityratio in itself. This means that stretch can be deemed as dangerous, in case of accidents. Theabove pie-chart 3, shows that large heavy vehicles are involved in most of the accidents, withcars being the second most involved. This is a hazardous sign as large heavy vehicles areknown to cause greater damage than smaller vehicles.Pie Chart 4: Type of Vehicle - Drivers Fault Pie Chart 5: Reason for accidentPie-chart (5) depicts that the cause of the accidents mainly is due to the negligent driving ofheavy vehicle drivers, who on the other hand should be more careful than other vehicledrivers.5.3. Road Safety Audit SurveyA preliminary survey is done to gauge the situation in the study area to find basic problemsand data requirements. The audit commenced on 14th December 2011, 1000 hours to 1700hours. The audit team carried out site inspection by day and by night. The initial siteinspection was an overview of the entire length of the road to be audited. Detailed notes andmore than 100 photographs were taken of the perceived deficiencies. The audit team thendiscussed the possible measures to address these safety problems. Checklist (IRC and ARRB)were used to ensure a thorough coverage of the issues over the full length of the road. Theroad has been divided into total stretch parts, for ease of analysis. We shall present some basicproblems sighted on a drive through the road. 6
  7. 7. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions5.4. Safety DeficienciesA number of safety deficiencies were identified along the road. The deficiencies and measuresrecommended to address are discussed below. Issue : Cars and parking extends into the third lane of the road Remedial measures: Provisions for Car parking need to be made Issue: Kerb height uneven. At times equal to the road height. Cars parked halfway over the footpath Remedial Measures: Kerb should be of uniform height Provisions for car parking should be made Issue: Extra width provided on the curve is flooded Remedial measures: Extra width should be provided for vehicle taking horizontal curve cause there is tendency of driver to ply away from the edge of the carriage way as they drive. Issue: Kerb height insufficient (causing accident) Remedial measures: Kerb height should be sufficient enough to bar speeding vehicle from going the other side 7
  8. 8. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions Issue: Street lights have been covered by over-grown trees. Remedial measures: There should be adequate lighting and visibility during any time of the day. Light poles should be installed accordingly Issue: Pipelines encroaching the footpath and road shoulder. Road is badly patched. Remedial measures: Pavement should be free of defects that could cause safety issues6.0. Road Safety Audit SoftwareIRC and ARRB checklist were used to ensure a thorough coverage of design issues over thefull length of the road. As an aid, the "Easy Road Safety Audit Software" suitable for IndianConditions, was developed by IITB team. Prompt lists, sometimes called checklists, are oneof the tools used in conducting Road Safety Audits (RSAs) that help the auditors to identifypotential safety issues and ensure that they do not overlook something important in an audit.There are, however, many challenges in using RSA prompt lists. The main one is that the useof comprehensive RSA prompt lists has the potential to become an exercise of “ticking” theboxes instead of an aid for the application of knowledge and experience of the auditors.Another concern is that with the use of hi-level, broad prompt lists deprive the auditors ofsufficient detail that might be needed. The Road Safety Audit (RSA) Software was developedto address these challenges and to support the practical implementation of RSA Guidelines.The RSA Software is not just a mere automation of RSA prompt lists – it is intended to be aguiding and process tracking tool enabling the use of RSA prompt lists at variety of detaillevels, while providing a way to accompany each safety issue raised with a discussion andassessment. Using the software helps auditors to think about and justify their findings. Thesoftware assists in drafting RSA reports, enables users to record safety issues both by promptlist topic and by location, helps verify issues and locations entered. The goal of the software isto enable RSA team members to think about broader issues during the safety performanceexamination and to justify their findings and recommendations. A methodology „Road SafetyAudit Index‟ was developed to get the best use out of the Road Safety Audit Software whichwas written in C++ programming language. 8
  9. 9. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions6.1 Audit Index AnalysisThe number of accidents occurring on a certain day is itself assumed to be normallydistributed, with a mean value being a linear function of independent variables, and a variancebeing constant and same for all days of a certain time period studied. Some of the independentvariables that could be considered are: Visibility Issues, Design Speed, Width of roadelements, Lightings on road, Crash Barriers, Readability Issues, Traffic Signal, PavementConditions, Signs, Road Marking, Pedestrian and Parking facilitiesThe model is of the following form:Z = α1x1 + α2x2 + α3x3 + α4x4 + ……+αnxnWhere Z = Road safety audit factor, α1, α2…αn = weightage, x1, x2 …xn = independentvariables (Factors listed above)To determine the αi the influency variables are prioritized into three groups keeping in mindthe safety issues and statistical survey. Out of the total of 100, the distribution is done in theratio 50:30:20 to primary: secondary: tertiary variables respectively.Then these scores are divided into the subgroup according to the expert‟s opinion. Belowgiven are these variables and the score allotted to each assessment question respectively.Thereby the respective αi „s are allotted and the road safety audit factor „Z‟ is determined fromthe model equation given above. Table 2 Primary: secondary: tertiary variables Primary Variable – 50 Secondary Variable – 30 Tertiary Variable - 20 o Visibility Issues [10] o Readability Issues [10] o Signs [2+2+2] o Design Speed [5+5] o Traffic Signal [3+3+3] o Road Marking o Width of elements [10] o Pavement Conditions [2+2+2+2] o Lightings on road [3+3+2+3] o Pedestrian and Parking [4+3+3] facilities o Crash Barriers [1.5+1.5+1.5+1.5] [3+2+3+2]The road safety audit factor may lie in the range of 0-100 which will determine the RoadSafety Audit Index of the road whose road safety audit is done. According to the table givenbelow the road is thus classified and its major areas of safety concern is thus given by theprogram. The whole process is carried out using a Road Safety Audit Software, which doesthe assessment using a set of questionnaires and gives the final audit report for the roadstretch analyzed. Table 3 Road Safety Audit Factor Classification Of Road Road Safety Audit Factor (Z)Class D <40Class C 40-60Class B 60-80Class A 80-100Road Safety Audit Index for the Palm Beach Road was calculated using the software and thereport was as follows: 9
  10. 10. Proceedings of AMTID 2011, NIT Calicut, Jun 22-24, 2011 Road Safety Audit for Indian Roads and Conditions Snapshot of Safety Audit Software Input & Output7. CONCLUSIONSThis paper has outlined the dimensions of the road safety problem on roads in India. A casestudy is presented, describing the purpose and methodology of a road safety audit. The auditidentified a number of relatively low cost preventive measures that can be implemented tosignificantly reduce the risk of road accidents. This study serves two purposes, the first is toreport the findings of Road Safety Audits performed on the case study road, and the second isto document the lessons learned in the current study that will facilitate future Road SafetyAudits in Indian cities. As highlighted by the accidental data and software output, weconclude that there are definite issues with visibility of the road. Also, a certain section of theroad, namely Killa Chowk may have to be redesigned as per IRC recommendations and speedrestrictions be imposed on it. There is a wide range of issues and the remedial measuressuggested must be implemented to ensure greater safety.REFERENCES1. S.R. Tambe, “Accident Prevention Efforts in Maharashtra”, Proceedings of International Seminar on Highway Safety Management & Devices, New Delhi, 6-7 November 1998.2. S.C. Sharma & Michael Lyons, “Road Safety Audit of a National Highway in India”, Proceedings of International Seminar on Highway Safety Management & Devices, New Delhi, 6-7 November 1998.3. Prof. (Dr.) N.S. Srinivasan & R.Ramarksihan, “ Road Safety Action Plan for Chennai City”, Proceedings of International Seminar on Highway Safety Management & Devices, New Delhi, 6-7 November 1998.4. P.R. Chandak, “ Safety Audit – Step to Mitigate Road Accident Disaster”, Proceedings of International Seminar on Highway Safety Management & Devices, New Delhi, 6-7 November 1998.5. AUSTROADS. (1994). Road Safety Audit. AUSTROADS Publication No. AP-30/94.6. TRRL, (1991). Towards Safer Roads in Developing Countries. 10