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Discrete Dynamics in Nature and Society
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 864791, 9 pages
Research Article

Conspicuity Research on the Highway Roadside Objects: A Simulator Study

1School of Mechanical Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, Beijing 100081, China
2College of Metropolitan Transportation, Beijing University of Technology, Beijing 100124, China

Received 15 November 2013; Revised 20 January 2014; Accepted 21 January 2014; Published 5 March 2014

Academic Editor: Huimin Niu

Copyright © 2014 Xuemei Chen et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


In a monotonous travelling environment, the single-vehicle run-off-roadside accidents occur easily. The injuries and fatalities caused by those accidents are significant components of the annual road casualties. The causation is the complex interaction of the visual effects on the roadside objects’ conspicuity. So the conspicuity enhancement needs to be considered in the roadside objects design to provide a temporary restoration of alertness and vigilance to drivers. Factors contributing to the conspicuity of the roadside objects were analyzed in this paper. A driving simulator study was conducted in order to extrapolate the relationship between the legibility distances and the objects and to quantify the conspicuity of the roadside objects different in basic features. The conclusions of this paper were firstly, a significant correlation existed between the mean legibility distance and the object’s size. The mean legibility distance was in a significant exponential proportion to the object’s size. Secondly, the triangle’s legibility was better than that of the rectangle and round contours. Only when the roadside object was combined with the suitable contour and size did the best visual quality come. To some extent, the conclusions could provide theoretical tools and strategies to optimize the dimensional design of the roadside objects in order to maintain the roadside safety.