Objective: Understanding the various factors that affect accident risk is of particular concern to decision makers and researchers. The incorporation of real-time traffic and weather data constitutes a fruitful approach when analyzing accident risk. However, the vast majority of relevant research has no specific focus on vulnerable road users such as powered 2-wheelers (PTWs). Moreover, studies using data from urban roads and arterials are scarce. This study aims to add to the current knowledge by considering real-time traffic and weather data from 2 major urban arterials in the city of Athens, Greece, in order to estimate the effect of traffic, weather, and other characteristics on PTW accident involvement.
Methods: Because of the high number of candidate variables, a random forest model was applied to reveal the most important variables. Then, the potentially significant variables were used as input to a Bayesian logistic regression model in order to reveal the magnitude of their effect on PTW accident involvement.
Results: The results of the analysis suggest that PTWs are more likely to be involved in multivehicle accidents than in single-vehicle accidents. It was also indicated that increased traffic flow and variations in speed have a significant influence on PTW accident involvement. On the other hand, weather characteristics were found to have no effect.
Conclusions: The findings of this study can contribute to the understanding of accident mechanisms of PTWs and reduce PTW accident risk in urban arterials.