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Open AccessArticle

A Model to Predict Children’s Reaction Time at Signalized Intersections

Faculty of Civil Engineering and Architecture Osijek, Josip Juraj Strossmayer University of Osijek, Vladimira Preloga 3, 31 000 Osijek, Croatia
Safety 2020, 6(2), 22; https://doi.org/10.3390/safety6020022
Received: 20 March 2020 / Revised: 23 April 2020 / Accepted: 29 April 2020 / Published: 5 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainable and Safe Road Design)
Traffic accident statistics in urban areas, both locally in Croatia and at the European level, identify children as a group of vulnerable road users. The analysis of the parameters that influence the interaction of child pedestrians and other road users requires special attention. This paper presents the results of research about the reaction time of children, measured both in laboratory conditions, via a computer reaction time test, and in actual traffic conditions. The results of the reaction time test in a situation with expected stimuli (a computer test) of children aged 6 to 10 years were compared with the results of the reaction time of adult traffic participants, drivers, who also took part in the computer test. Standard deviations of the reaction times between the control group (drivers, adults) and each subgroup of children were significantly different (p < 0.05). The results suggest that the largest developmental jump occurs between preschool children and first-grade children. In actual traffic conditions, the reaction time of children aged 4 to 16 years at the signalized intersection was measured. The model for predicting the reaction time of children in real traffic conditions was created using a neural network. The model prediction results matched well with the values measured in actual traffic conditions, for the observed intersection (correlation coefficient is 94.56%) and for the validation intersection (correlation coefficient is 92.29%). Parameters influencing children’s reaction times in real traffic conditions were identified by applying both statistical analysis and the neural network model developed. Using both methods, the same key distractors were identified—the movement of children in the group and the use of mobile phones. The case study was conducted at selected signalized intersections in the city of Osijek, Croatia. View Full-Text
Keywords: children in traffic; signalized intersections; reaction time; prediction model; neural networks children in traffic; signalized intersections; reaction time; prediction model; neural networks
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Ištoka Otković, I. A Model to Predict Children’s Reaction Time at Signalized Intersections. Safety 2020, 6, 22.

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