The Effects of Road Design on Driving

  • Jan Theeuwes


The design of many roads and their typical appearance reflects the way these roads developed through history. Because the road design is not considered as a system property optimally adapted to the human capabilities, there is by no means a structurally safe traffic system. The crucial question is how potential errors occurring in traffic can be reduced by designing a road environment that is optimally adapted to the goals and needs of the road users. It is commonly estimated that over 90 % of the traffic accidents are related to human error. Because better education, information and enforcement only have marginal effects on accident reduction, it is absolutely crucial that the road environment is designed in such a way that human errors are reduced to a minimum (see e.g., Theeuwes and Godthelp, 1993, 1995a, 1995b). The crucial question is how design principles can reduce the probability and consequences of an error during driving.


Visual Search Traffic Sign Road User Strategic Level Rural Road 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jan Theeuwes
    • 1
  1. 1.Vrije UniversiteitAmsterdamThe Netherland

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