The physical and operational characteristics of large trucks distinguish them from other types of vehicles in terms of facility design needs and safety requirements. A critical node in the surface transportation network is the highway-rail grade crossing (HRGC) because it represents a conflict point between different modes of transportation. The focus of this research was to identify factors related to different injury severity levels of truck/truck-trailer drivers in crashes reported at HRGCs. This study utilized a mixed logit model to investigate injury severity of those drivers and relied on 2007–2014 Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) crash and inventory data involving trucks/truck-trailers. Results showed that truck/truck-trailer drivers’ injuries in crashes reported at HRGCs were positively associated with train speed, when train struck the road user (truck/truck-trailer), when the driver “went around crossing gates”, older drivers, crashes reported in rural areas, and crashes at crossings with a minimum crossing angle of 60–90 degrees. Presence of crossbucks, gates, track obstructions, and HRGCs located within 500 feet of a highway were associated with relatively less severe driver injuries. The paper provides recommendations for safety improvements at HRGCs and recommendations for future research.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Civil and Structural Engineering
- Mechanical Engineering