Closed Course Test and Analysis of Vibration and Sound Generatedby Temporary Rumble Strips for Short Term Work Zones

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Transportation Research Record: The Journal of the Transportation Research Board




National Academy of Sciences

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Driver distraction and speeding are two contributors to crashes in construction and maintenance work zones. Rumble strips can be effective and have been used in some states to alert drivers to reduce speed in advance of some change in the driving situation, such as at intersections. Previous research has examined the potential of using temporary rumble strips in advance of work zones. The purpose of this research was to compare the attention-getting characteristics of several temporary rumble strips with permanent rumble strips. Two types of devices were tested and compared with permanent rumble strips: portable plastic rumble strips and adhesive rubberized polymer rumble strips. These devices were tested for their ability to generate steering wheel vibrations and in-vehicle and roadside sound. Analysis revealed that the portable plastic rumble strips were more effective on cars than on trucks for generating in-vehicle vibration and increasing the in-vehicle sound level. Further, they were generally better than the adhesive rumble strips in matching the characteristics of the tested permanent rumble strip. This was also true for the configurations that contained fewer than six portable plastic rumble strips. If the vibration and sound generated by the permanent rumble strips is considered the standard performance, various configurations of the portable plastic rumble strips can be implemented in short-term work zones and provide results similar to those of permanent rumble strips.

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