Report numberRA-MOW-2009-012
TitleEvaluation of the ‘hot spot’ programme
SubtitleAn audit of existing evaluation programmes
AuthorsElke Moons
Published byPolicy Research Centre for Mobility and Public Works, track Traffic Safety 2007-2011
Number of pages31
Document languageDutch
Partner(s)Universiteit Hasselt
Work packageOther: Infrastructure and space

This report provides an overview of the existing methods for evaluating the effects of treatment of hazardous locations. Very often, though, more attention is paid to the identification and selection of these hot spots when compared to the evaluation of the effects after treatment. This report describes a study of existing evaluation programs in Australia, Europe and the United States.

In general, two movements can be detected in evaluation studies. The first movement is regarded as being the more conventional approach that involves a simple before-after comparison of accident counts or rates with or without a control group. The expected number of accidents can be determined based on a control ratio or by means of a statistical model. This method does not account for changes in the traffic volume and next to this, regression tot the mean might give a biased result. If the number of accidents is large enough, the effect of regression to the mean can be accounted for by considering before and after periods that are long enough to carry out the analysis.

The second movement is that of the (Empirical) Bayesian approach. The main advantage of the correct use of this method entails the fact the confounding factors, like regression to the mean or changing traffic volumes are accounted for. The major disadvantages are the complexity of the evaluation method itself next to the enormous amount of data required for the analysis. Conditioning on the availability of the data and on a correct application of the method, this way of evaluating is preferred.

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The Policy Research Centre for Traffic Safety carries out policy relevant scientific research under the authority of the Flemish Government. The Centre is the result of a

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