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Exploring the spatial impacts of human activities on urban traffic crashes using multi-source big data

Jie Bao, Zhao Yang, Weili Zeng and Xiaomeng Shi

Journal of Transport Geography, 2021, vol. 94, issue C

Abstract: Traffic crashes are geographical events, and their spatial patterns are strongly linked to the regional characteristics of road network, sociodemography, and human activities. Different human activities may have different impacts on traffic exposures, traffic conflicts and speeds in different transportation geographic areas, and accordingly generate different traffic safety outcomes. Most previous researches have concentrated on exploring the impacts of various road network attributes and sociodemographic characteristics on crash occurrence. However, the spatial impacts of human activities on traffic crashes are unclear. To fill this gap, this study attempts to investigate how human activities contribute to the spatial pattern of the traffic crashes in urban areas by leveraging multi-source big data. Three kinds of big data sources are used to collect human activities from the New York City. Then, all the collected data are aggregated into regional level (ZIP Code Tabulation Areas). Geographically Weighted Poisson Regression (GWPR) method is applied to identify the relationship between various influencing factors and regional crash frequency. The results reveal that human activity variables from multi-source big data significantly affect the spatial pattern of traffic crashes, which may bring new insights for roadway safety analyses. Comparative analyses are further performed for comparing the GWPR models which consider human activity variables from different big data sources. The results of comparative analyses suggest that multiple big data sources could complement with each other in the coverage of spatial areas and user groups, thereby improving the performance of zone-level crash models and fully unveiling the spatial impacts of human activities on traffic crashes in urban areas. The results of this study could help transportation authorities better identify high-risky regions and develop proactive countermeasures to effectively reduce crashes in these regions.

Keywords: Human activities; Multi-source; Crashes; Spatial pattern; Big data analysis (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2021
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DOI: 10.1016/j.jtrangeo.2021.103118

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