A. Benedetto, L.V. Sant’Andrea
Interactive driving simulation offers today very promising perspectives in the field of road safety design and management. At the same time it implies a “revolutionary” approach respect to the traditional road engineering models. In fact the consolidated theories, starting from kinematical and dynamical hypotheses, are based on assumption that are not experimentally validated under different conditions of traffic flow, weather, boundary conditions, etc.. Advanced technologies such as driving simulators make it possible investigate the role of human factors under a multidisciplinary perspective. It looks like turning from a theoretical approach to a new experimentally validated scientific investigation methodology. The first outcomes are absolutely promising and they refers to three main field of applications and study: the theoretical investigations, the road projects validation and the road safety audit and assessment. The paper discusses the cultural context and presents an overview on significant applications. Finally the perspectives of simulation for road safety are outlined.
Keywords: interactive driving simulator; road safety; safety audit; accident prediction