Traffic Safety Effects of a Wet Pavement Detection System Installed on a North Carolina Interstate: A Statistical Summary of Crash Data for a Temporary On-Site Detour inside an I-485 Construction Zone in Mecklenburg County
In June 2002, the North Carolina DOT (NCDOT) opened a three-quarter mile temporary traffic detour around an I-85 bridge construction project in Mecklenburg County. When the detour was opened there were large sections of standing water on the roadway during heavy rains. The standing water was a factor in several hydroplane crashes. The NCDOT decided to install a wet pavement detection system (WPDS) in March, 2003 to help alleviate some of the impacts of the temporary hazardous situation. This report summarized the traffic safety effects on this section of roadway and quantified the differences in crash experience due to deployment of the WPDS.
- The WPDS reduced the yearly wet crash rate by 39 percent.
- The WPDS reduced the yearly injury crash rate by 35 percent.
- The average daily crashes per day dropped by 58 percent on days defined as having heavy precipitation.