Format of Original
National Center for Freight & Infrastructure Research and Education
Information contained in the Highway Capacity Manual on the influence heavy vehicles have on freeway traffic operations has been based on few field data collection efforts and relied mostly on traffic simulation efforts. In the 2010 Manual heavy vehicle impact is evaluated based on “passenger car equivalent” values for buses, recreational vehicles and trucks. These values were calibrated for relatively uncongested freeway conditions (levels of service A through C) since inadequate field data on heavy vehicle behavior under congested conditions were available. A number of field data collection efforts, that were not included in deriving the passenger car equivalent values used in the Highway Capacity Manual, indicated that heavy vehicle impacts on traffic operations may increase as freeway congestion levels increase and freeways operate under unstable flow conditions. The goal of the present effort was to collect and analyze field data with an emphasis on heavy vehicle behavior under lower speeds and derive passenger car equivalent values under such conditions.