Technical Reports

Public Education and Enforcement Research Study—Macomb, Illinois, Analysis

  • 01
  • Mar
  • 2011
AUTHOR: Suzanne M. Horton
SUBJECT: Highway-Rail Grade Crossings, Accident Reduction
KEYWORDS: alternative safety measures; education and enforcement
ABSTRACT: The Public Education and Enforcement Research Study (PEERS) was a collaborative effort between the Federal Railroad Administration, the Illinois Commerce Commission, and local communities in the State of Illinois. This project was designed to promote safety at highway-rail grade crossings. The role of the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Center was to monitor and evaluate highway-rail grade crossings in Illinois communities using video data collection, while the communities conducted education and enforcement campaigns. The effectiveness of the programs was determined by counting the number of motorists and pedestrians that violated the crossing warning devices during three project phases. In 2006, results from one community, Arlington Heights, were published. This report focuses on the effectiveness of the PEERS programs in Macomb, IL, and compares the results to Arlington Heights. In Arlington Heights, overall violations were reduced nearly 31 percent, and the most risky pedestrian violations were reduced 76 percent. In Macomb, there were few pedestrian violations, but overall violations still increased slightly during the study. The variations in the effectiveness of the education and enforcement campaigns were accounted for by the differences in the communities and the way in which the program was implemented.