Evaluation of Incident Management Strategies

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CAIT project no.: 88 02 RU934

Fiscal Year: 2000/2001

Status: Final

Rutgers-CAIT Author(s): Kaan Ozbay, Weihua Xiao, Gaurav JaiswalBekir Bartin

External Author(s): Karl Brodtman



In this project, incident management related literature is reviewed and important incident management procedures and technologies currently used in the US are described in detail. Impacts of these incident management strategies and technologies in terms of measures of effectiveness are also discussed using the information obtained from the literature review. Accident data are obtained from NJDOT and part of this data related to the proposed test network, namely part of South Jersey network, is analyzed to understand the incident occurrence characteristics. Several incident occurrence\incident duration and severity models are also proposed. Comprehensive user-friendly “incident management” simulation software is developed as part of this project. This was needed in order to realistically evaluate the benefits of various incident management strategies and technologies identified in the literature review section. Rutgers Incident Management Systems (RIMS) software uses a realistic traffic simulation model based on the cell transmission model proposed by Daganzo (35). The developed software can also generate incidents and test various response strategies and technologies. This integrated incident management and traffic simulation tool which is an attempt to develop a specific tool just designed for the purpose of incident management evaluation studies, is then applied to the selected test network using various scenarios ranging from simple to more complex. Finally, a detailed cost benefit analysis for these selected scenarios using the cost figures mainly obtained from the cost database provided by FHWA. The Cost Benefit analysis produced C/B ratios higher than for all the tested scenarios, implying positive impacts of the tested incident management scenarios and technologies. Our positive findings are also shown to support the findings of similar studies conducted in other parts of the country. However, it should be kept in mind that these are preliminary results based on various assumptions and more detailed studies are needed to further improve the reliability of these results.