Towards safer intersections: recommendations for intersections on 50, 80 and 100 km/h roads


Dijkstra, A.




Many crashes in the Netherlands occur at intersections, more on some intersection types than on others. The current manuals for road design do not offer guidelines that can be used in the considerations about which type of intersection to choose in a specific situation. The present study can be used to formulate such guidelines.

The amount of traffic using the intersection, both of the primary traffic flow and on the secondary traffic flow, determines which intersection types can be used. In general, roundabouts are the safest type of intersection. Intersection types in order of safety :

  1. roundabout
  2. priority intersection
  3. signalized intersection

If a (turbo) roundabout is not a possibility, option 2 is to be recommended. If this is not feasible either, for instance due to excessive traffic volume, the third option remains. Urban three-arm intersections are an exception against the rule and are safest with traffic signals.

SWOV has developed a method to determine the differences in safety between different types and variants of intersections. This method also allows calculating the safety effect of changing the intersection type. We recommend incorporating this calculation method into traffic engineering software.

Print this page

Published in

Proceedings of the 5th International Symposium on Highway Geometric Design, 22-24 June 2015, Vancouver, Canada