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Traffic Calming Measures in Lichfield

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Introduction.

On 29th September 2006, our geography group was given the task of analyzing the different kinds of traffic calming measures around Lichfield. We split into even groups and analyzed each measure by speed gun and timed results, and recorded our findings.

In this piece of fieldwork, we analyzed two types of traffic calming measures. Firstly, we had the task of analyzing the speed cushions on Weston Road. This traffic calming measure was situated in a built up housing estate on the outskirts of Lichfield city centre. We measured twenty-five vehicles in the processes mentioned above. image00.png

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Finally, we analyzed the sleeping policemen on Cherry Orchard. This is also a busy housing estate, but was possibly the calmer of the two areas that we covered. However, there was a school situated close-by so in terms of safety, this was probably the most important site that we covered.

image37.pngimage01.png

Aims and Hypothesis.

In this project, I hope to answer two aims, these are:

  • Sleeping policemen are the most effective traffic calming measure.
  • Sleeping policemen are more effective on larger vehicles.

Also in this project, I expect to find that the sleeping policemen are most effective at reducing the speed of vehicles over the road cushions.  I believe this as the sleeping policemen are stretched across the whole of the road and cannot be avoided by oncoming vehicles.  Also, I believe that the sleeping policemen are more effective at reducing the speeds of larger vehicles than smaller ones due to the fact that the larger cars are more powerful in terms of engine size and will be travelling at higher speeds meaning that their breaking and slow down period over the traffic calming measure will be more responsive than the smaller vehicles.

Data Collection.

When collecting the data I used a speed gun to measure the exact speed of vehicles over the traffic calming measure. This enabled us to gather an exact speed of the vehicle approaching the traffic calming measure from a distance of 25m, then a reading of the vehicle over the traffic calming measure and then again as the vehicle drove away from the traffic calming measure at 25m.  Also, another two people were standing by the TCM to take the speeds, type of vehicle, number of passengers and gender of the driver.

image29.pngimage24.pngimage27.pngimage10.pngimage18.png

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image35.pngimage02.pngimage35.pngimage03.pngimage02.pngimage05.pngimage06.pngimage04.pngimage05.pngimage08.pngimage07.png

Results – Weston Road, Lichfield.

Location and Calming Measure

Maximum Speed Limit

Mean Speed over 1st distance

No. of vehicles within speed limit before TCM

Mean speed over TCM

Mean speed lost when passing over TCM

Mean speed over 3rd distance

No. of vehicles within speed limit after TCM

Mean speed over whole distance

Weston Road

(Cushions)

20

MPH

21.32

MPH

12/25

14.64

MPH

6.68

MPH

21.24

MPH

15/25

19.07

MPH

Average Speed .

Overall Average        Average Speedsimage11.pngimage11.pngimage12.pngimage11.pngimage09.png

               Speed        of Vehiclesimage16.pngimage15.pngimage14.pngimage13.png

Acceleration and Deceleration.

image17.png

Overall Average         Average Deceleration           167image11.pngimage11.pngimage11.png

     Decelerationimage19.pngimage21.pngimage20.pngimage22.png

image23.png

Overall Average         Average Acceleration           165image11.pngimage11.pngimage11.png

     Accelerationimage22.pngimage21.pngimage20.pngimage19.png

From looking at my results, I can see many things. Firstly, I can see that the average speed of vehicles over the first distance was just over the speed limit of 20 MPH for that area. To be specific, just over half of these vehicles were actually within the set speed limit upon entering the traffic calming measure. Over the traffic calming measure, speeds of these vehicles reduced by an average of 6.68 MPH, meaning the traffic calming measure had done its job correctly as speeds of these vehicles reduced and thus were back within the set speed limit of 20 MPH. Upon exiting the traffic calming measure, the number of vehicles within the set speed limit increased by three meaning that the measure had done its job successfully due to the average speed over the measure was within the set speed limit.

Results – Cherry Orchard, Lichfield.

Location and Calming Measure

Maximum Speed Limit

Mean Speed over 1st distance

No. of vehicles within speed limit before TCM

Mean speed over TCM

Mean speed lost when passing over TCM

Mean speed over 3rd distance

No. of vehicles within speed limit after TCM

Mean speed over whole distance

Cherry Orchard

(Sleeping Policemen)

30

MPH

19.64

MPH

25/25

14.04

MPH

5.6

MPH

18.64

MPH

25/25

17.19

MPH

Average Speed Graph.

Overall Average        Average Speedsimage11.pngimage11.pngimage26.pngimage11.pngimage25.png

               Speed        of Vehiclesimage13.pngimage14.pngimage16.pngimage15.png

Acceleration and Deceleration.

Overall Average         Average Deceleration           154image11.pngimage28.pngimage11.pngimage11.png

     Decelerationimage20.pngimage19.pngimage21.pngimage22.png

image30.png

Overall Average         Average Acceleration           140image11.pngimage11.pngimage11.png

     Accelerationimage20.pngimage21.pngimage19.pngimage22.png

From looking at my results, I can see many things. Firstly, I can see that the average speed of vehicles over the first distance was well within the set speed limit of 30 MPH for that area. To be specific, all vehicles were on average, 10 MPH under the speed limit when entering the measure. Also, every vehicle that we recorded was within the set speed limit upon entering the measure. Over the traffic calming measure, speeds of these vehicles reduced by an average of 5.6 MPH, meaning that not only has the traffic calming measure done its job successfully, all vehicle were within the set speed limit of 30 MPH, and on average were traveling over half that speed. Upon exiting the traffic calming measure, the number of vehicles within the set speed limit was still at 25 meaning that the measure had done its job successfully due to the average speed over the measure was still within the set speed limit.

Analysis

Overall, and by looking at my results, I can see straight away that the sleeping policemen on Cherry Orchard were more effective than the speed cushions on Weston Road. Firstly, the sleeping policemen were more successful because the overall average speed in Cherry Orchard was nearly 2 MPH lower than that in Weston Road. Also, the amount of vehicles that kept to the speed limit before and after the traffic calming measure a lot higher in Cherry Orchard than in Weston Road. All vehicles keeping to the speed limit in Cherry Orchard show this, whereas there was only an increase of three in Weston Road. Finally, the overall deceleration approaching the sleeping policemen was more than that off approaching the cushions, meaning that the overall success rate of the sleeping policemen is a lot higher than the cushions, and thus, sleeping policemen are more effective as they cover the whole width of the road and cannot be avoided, whereas cushions do not and are easier to avoid.

So in answer to my first aim, I have found that sleeping policemen are the most effective traffic calming measure out of the two methods. Also, I think that my hypothesis has been answered as I have found that sleeping policemen are more successful than the speed cushions. I like to suck cock

Aim 2 – Effectiveness of Sleeping Policemen.

Vehicle Type

Mean Speed over 1st distance

Mean speed over TCM

Mean speed lost when passing over TCM

Mean speed over 3rd distance

Mean speed over whole distance

Small Car

18

MPH

14.6

MPH

4.5

MPH

17

MPH

16.7

MPH

Large Car

20.9

MPH

13.6

MPH

6.3

MPH

19.5

MPH

17.51

MPH

From looking at the table, I can see that larger vehicles are greater effected by the Sleeping Policemen and overall have to have a larger reduction in speed compared to smaller vehicles when coming up to and going over the traffic calming measure.  I can see this as the larger vehicles, on average slow down 1.8MPH more then smaller vehicles. Although, the mean speed of the larger vehicles over the whole distance was greater then the smaller vehicles, so the larger reduction of speed over the traffic calming measure compared to the smaller vehicles could be due to the difference in speed between the two different types of vehicles at the 25metres from the traffic calming measure.  I believe that this is the case, as generally smaller vehicles travel at lower speeds and as a result do not need to reduce the vehicles speed as dramatically as larger vehicles.

Evaluation.

Throughout our data collection, I believe we did this to the best of our ability but feel that a number of factors may have altered the results we collected on the day and consequently, meant that the results collected may be inaccurate.

Firstly, as the weather that day was fairly overcast and rainy, there was a lot of surface water on the roads. As a result of this hazard, I believe that drivers may have been traveling at a lower speed than what the do usually, which subsequently meant that their speed over the traffic calming measure was different. Cars were also parked on the roadside both before and after the traffic calming measure, which subsequently meant that drivers had impaired vision over the course and had to reduce their speeds accordingly. As a result, drivers would have been taking more care when driving, as their reaction times would have been affected.

However, we also used another method of data collection to collect the information. We used stop clock to measure the time taken for the car to pass the traffic calming measure but I have decided against using the results in my project as I do not believe they give the most accurate of readings due to factors as a result of human error, which could have altered the readings. Other factors include the stop clocks not functioning correctly and people forgetting to start them, and thus making up times. In my opinion, the speed gun results give more accurate results. As a result, this would have affected my aims meaning them being incorrect.

If I were to conduct this investigation again, I would change a number of factors. Firstly, I would use a different method to collect the data. This would probably involve placing a series of electronic sensors along the roadside. By doing this, I would get exact speeds and timings of vehicles passing through the measure, so no human error would pay a major role meaning results would be far more accurate. Also, I would increase the number of vehicles surveyed and also make sure that I’d record at least five different types of vehicles passing through the measure. In doing so, this would make my investigation fairer. Finally, I would change the roads surveyed, which would be straighter with no fixed variables affecting the course. In doing so, we would get more accurate readings, as well as making sure that it was a clear day with no surface water on the roads.

Finally, I believe that my hypothesis I predicted was correct, as I feel that the results I collected state that the sleeping policemen have a far greater impact on vehicles compared to road cushions, as well as proving that sleeping policemen are more effective at slowing down the larger vehicles than the smaller ones.image33.pngimage34.pngimage31.png

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