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Active Road Studs as an Alternative to Lighting on Rural Roads: Driver Safety Perception

Llewellyn, Richard; Cowie, Jonathan; Maher, Mike


Mike Maher


Drivers, particularly with increasing age, cite driving at night as being problematic and feeling unsafe. Ultimately this may result in self-regulation and avoidance, with potentially negative health effects. The issue is commonly mitigated through provision of street lighting, but with it comes cost, environmental impact, and other negative effects. Research has suggested that provision of LED Active Road Studs may be of assistance to drivers at night. However, it is not known how implementation of this measure affects driver confidence, as research to date has focused on observational study of actual driving behaviour. The present work addresses this gap in knowledge using data from 698 respondents to a questionnaire survey of households around a recently treated route. Overall, 72% reported an increase in confidence driving at night, with key reasons cited as increased preview time and reduced glare. A total of 80% of respondents believed the overall safety of the study route had improved. Underlying confidence was found to be lower in females, with confidence increasing with mileage driven. This study is the first to suggest the use of active road studs may increase driver confidence and provide increased travel opportunities, particularly where street lighting is impractical or undesirable in terms of sustainability.


Llewellyn, R., Cowie, J., & Maher, M. (2020). Active Road Studs as an Alternative to Lighting on Rural Roads: Driver Safety Perception. Sustainability, 12(22), Article 9648.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Nov 16, 2020
Online Publication Date Nov 19, 2020
Publication Date 2020-11
Deposit Date Nov 25, 2020
Publicly Available Date Nov 25, 2020
Journal Sustainability
Publisher MDPI
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 12
Issue 22
Article Number 9648
Keywords active road studs; street lighting; driver perception; road safety; human factors; rural roads; junctions; crash countermeasures
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Active Road Studs As An Alternative To Lighting On Rural Roads: Driver Safety Perception (3.8 Mb)

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Copyright Statement
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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