What determines where drivers press the gas pedal when crossing an unsignalized intersection?

We investigated factors determining the start position, defined as the point where a driver presses the gas pedal immediately prior to entering an intersection. Start positions are highly important for safety, because they mark the point where drivers complete their safety confirmation and begin accelerating to enter an intersection. Drivers' intersection crossing behavior, without right-of-way, was recorded at six unsignalized intersections in a residential area of Tsukuba, Japan. A total of 8 subjects drove the vehicle, at each intersection, 36 times. We analysed only the first three and last three trials because our previous study showed that start positions changed over repeated trials. We used linear regression analysis to identify significant explanatory variables. For the last three trials, own-road width (p < 0.01), crossroad sidewalk width (p < 0.01), and driver properties such as the start position alteration pattern (p < 0.01) were significant. The adjusted R-squared was 0.60, and the root mean square error was 0.80. The distance from the nearest edge of the crossroad to the start position typically increased when the crossroad sidewalk width and/or own-road width were broad, and was roughly equal to or less than the crossroad sidewalk width. For the first three trials, however, only own-road width (p < 0.01) was significant, and crossroad sidewalk width and the start position alteration pattern were not significant. The R-squared was 0.48, and the root mean square error was 1.29. These results suggest that subjects did not grasp the dimensions of the intersections sufficiently, in approaching the crossing, to drive as effectively as they otherwise would. Through repeated trials, they learned these dimensions, and drove more effectively as a result. This suggests that drivers should be better informed of intersection dimensions, for improved safety. The statistical significance of the start position alteration pattern indicated that individual drivers tended to maintain their characteristic driving behavior when crossing the intersections, which clearly demonstrated the importance of driver behavior properties as explanatory variables. It seems important, then, to consider this pronounced tendency when seeking to provide suitable assistance to individual drivers, with the aim of improving driver safety.


  • English

Media Info

  • Pagination: pp 161-165
  • Monograph Title: FAST-zero'15: 3rd international symposium on future active safety technology toward zero traffic accidents: September 9-11, 2015 Gothenburg, Sweden: proceedings

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 01602278
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Source Agency: Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute (VTI)
  • Files: ITRD, VTI
  • Created Date: Jun 20 2016 1:27PM