REPORTING OF DISABLED VEHICLES BY COOPERATIVE MOTORISTS

AN EXPERIMENT HAS BEEN CONDUCTED IN FOUR STATES TO DETERMINE WHETHER PASSING MOTORISTS WILL COOPERATE BY REPORTING FELLOW MOTORISTS NEEDING HELP. HIGHWAYS IN NEW YORK, KANSAS, CALIFORNIA, AND VIRGINIA WERE SELECTED TO REPRESENT A TYPICAL RANGE OF TRAFFIC VOLUMES AND TRIP LENGTHS. THE PASSING MOTORISTS WERE INSTRUCTED BY SPECIAL ROADSIDE SIGNS TO REPORT MOTORISTS NEEDING HELP BY FLASHING HEADLIGHTS AT A REPORTING STATION WHERE OBSERVERS RECORDED MOTORIST RESPONSES. A DISABLED VEHICLE WAS STAGED ALONG THE TEST SECTION. THE EXPERIMENT HAS SHOWN THAT MOTORISTS WILL COOPERATE AND THAT THE DEGREE OF COOPERATION IS PREDICTABLE. BECAUSE OF ITS SIMPLICITY AND LOW COST, SUCH A SYSTEM IS PARTICULARLY APPLICABLE TO HIGHWAYS IN LOW VOLUME, RURAL AREAS WHERE MORE SOPHISTICATED SOLUTIONS WOULD BE IMPRACTICAL. BEFORE RECOMMENDING WIDESPREAD USE OF A COOPERATIVE MOTORIST SYSTEM, THREE AREAS REQUIRE FURTHER WORK. AN EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM IS NEEDED TO ACQUAINT MOTORISTS WITH THE SYSTEM AND ITS FUNCTION. AN OPERATIONAL EXPERIMENT AND EVALUATION SHOULD BE CONDUCTED FOR SEVERAL MONTHS ON A TYPICAL EXTENDED SECTION OF HIGHWAY WHICH WOULD INCLUDE THE NECESSARY EQUIPMENT DEVELOPMENT AND CRITERIA DETERMINATION. A STANDARD SEND HELP SIGNAL SHOULD BE ADOPTED, WITH SPECIAL ATTENTION GIVEN TO THE NIGHTTIME PROBLEM OF SEEING MOTORISTS NEEDING HELP. THE COOPERATION RECEIVED THROUGHOUT THE EXPERIMENT FROM HIGHWAY AND POLICE OFFICIALS, MOTORISTS, AND NEWS MEDIA INDICATES THAT A NEED EXISTS FOR A REPORTING SYSTEM AND THAT THERE IS A HIGH DEGREE OF ACCEPTANCE TO THE COOPERATIVE MOTORIST CONCEPT. /BPR/

  • Corporate Authors:

    Bureau of Public Roads /US

    400 7th Street, SW
    Washington, DC  USA  20590
  • Authors:
    • Wisepart, I S
    • Rosenzweig, S N
    • WARSKOW, M A
  • Publication Date: 1967-5

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00224860
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Bureau of Public Roads /US
  • Report/Paper Numbers: Cpr-11-4205
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Dec 21 1994 12:00AM