Intelligent Rat-Runners: Impact of Car Navigation Systems on Safety of Residential Roads
The authors investigated the phenomenon of “intelligent rat-runners”—that is, road drivers that use car navigation systems to drive through residential areas in order to avoid congested traffic on arterial roads. A nationwide questionnaire survey revealed that some of such drivers, as a result of having to look at the displays of their navigation systems, have had experiences that could have resulted in serious accidents. A driving experiment conducted showed that drivers with access to information about narrow streets and route guidance through their navigation systems have a greater tendency to avoid congested arterial roads by turning into residential areas.
KeywordsCar navigation system Rat-runner Residential area Traffic safety Traffic calming
This work was supported by International Association of Traffic and Safety Science. The authors also thank Japan Automobile Federation for their cooperation.
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