Washington State University

Evaluation of the Social Cost of Modal Diversion: A Multi-Modal Safety Analysis – year 3 (2014-2015)


PI: Jeremy Sage (WSU)
Dates: 01/15/2015 – 06/15/2016

Infrastructure investment by public agencies routinely has a multi-faceted objective. Often, considerable components of these objectives may be viewed as attributable to the goal of increasing the social welfare of the residents of the region and users of the transportation system. Transportation factors related to social welfare or social costs may typically be viewed in terms of pollution, congestion, and safety. The realization of social cost savings or benefits (performance) is largely dependent upon the response functions (how the user responds to a change in the transportation system) of users. Response functions are largely an insight to the economic conditions experienced by the user. This project will develop a reliable and implementable performance evaluation of safety projects that is readily implementable by effected jurisdictions. To achieve this evaluation, the project will draw from literature and implement tactics from several research lines, primarily that of the transportation infrastructure investment, social cost, and modal choice literature. Read More

Determination of Creep Compliance and Indirect Tensile Strength for Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide (MEPDG) – year 3 (2014-2015)


PI: Haifang Wen (WSU)
Dates: 01/15/2015 – 06/15/2016

Pavement condition greatly affects the safety of driver. For instance, the rutting in wheelpath creates hydroplaning which can leads to loss of control of vehicles. The roughness, e.g. potholes, can pose safety hazards to the driver. Therefore, improving the pavement condition by designing cost-effective long-lasting pavement is of paramount importance. The adoptions of Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design Guide (MEPDG) align well with this goal, when compared to traditional empirical pavement design.

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Regional Map Based Analytical Platform for State-Wide Highway Safety Performance Assessment – year 3 (2014-2015)


PI: Ali Hajbabaie (WSU)
Co-Investigators: Yinhai Wang (UW)
Dates: 01/15/2015 – 06/15/2016

Most traffic crash modeling and safety performance analysis cannot capture impacts of dynamic factors that are often critical for understanding the occurrence mechanism of crashes and are very labor intensive.To address these deficiencies, this proposed research takes advantage of the ongoing DRIVE Net research at the University of Washington to build large-scale safety analysis functions on the data-rich eScience transportation platform. The proposed research has the following objectives: Improve current crash modeling methods; Develop a Safety Performance Index (SPI); Monitor the safety performance of the state highway network on regional map using SPI; Develop a Potential Safety Improvement Index (PSII); Develop safety improvement analysis methods for accident hotspots based on the overlapped SPI and PSII. Read More

Assessment of Lube Oil Management and Self-Cleaning Oil Filter Feasibility in WSF(WA State Ferries)Vessels – year 2 (2013-14)


PI: Liv Haselbach (WSU)
Dates: 07/01/2013 – 10/31/2014

Lube oil management aboard vessels is a critical component of maintaining the life of a vessel engine.  Lube oil and the associated filters are expensive as is the maintenance and associated downtime.  Disposal of filters as a hazardous waste and handling of lube oil presents an environmental risk and additional costs.  Preventive and predictive management of lube oil can reduce lube oil maintenance costs and environmental risk, making the operation of Washington State Ferries (WSF) vessels more sustainable and cost effective.  To gain these benefits WSF needs to consider both the economic and the environmental impacts of the self-cleaning oil filters alternative.   Read More

NDE System for Determining Wood Guardrail Post Integrity- year 2 (2013-14)


PI: Donald A. Bender (WSU)
Dates: 07/01/2013 – 6/30/2015

Wood guardrail posts degrade over time due to decay, insects and weathering, and the Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) needs an inspection system to determine the condition of posts along our highways to effectively prioritize future investments in guardrail upgrades. There are approximately 1.5 to 2 million guardrail posts on the state highway system.  Post inspection methods at WSDOT have never been uniformly defined, and the inspection opportunities have normally been associated with pavement preservation projects. Read More

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