Center for Safety Equity in Transportation

rural • isolated • tribal • indigenous

Driving Behavior and Traffic Safety Perceptions of Hawaiians, part-Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders

  • Completed

    CSET Project #: 1803

    Project Funding: CSET and University of Hawai'i - Manoa

  • Start Date: July 2018

    End Date: February 2020

    Budget: $149,952

Principal Investigator(s)

Panos Prevedouros

Panos D. Prevedouros, PhD is a Professor of Transportation and Chairman of the Department of Civil Engineering at the University of Hawaii at Manoa where and he developed and manages UH’s Traffic and Transportation Laboratory. He’s a Subcommittee Chair of the Transportation Research Board (TRB), a unit of the National Academies. Prevedouros is a registered Professional Engineer in the European Union, a Court-qualified Traffic and Transportation Engineering expert in Hawaii and Illinois, and an Envision Sustainability Professional (ENV SP). Prevedouros has expertise in urban road network management, traffic safety including incident management, traffic flow simulation, traffic signal optimization, intelligent transportation systems, demand forecasting and alternatives analysis, sustainable infrastructure including transportation, energy, policies and regulation. As of September 2017, Dr. Prevedouros has published 49 Technical Reports, 48 Academic Journal Papers, 45 Conference Refereed Papers, 35 Proceedings Papers, and co-authored the 2nd and 3rd editions of internationally adopted textbook Transportation Engineering and Planning (Prentice Hall, 1993 and 2001.) He has pioneered effective traffic solutions for Honolulu such as traffic underpasses and reversible flow lanes. He’s also developed a realistic plan for Hawaii’s energy future. He blogs on Hawaii’s infrastructure challenges at

Guohui Zhang

The PIs has emphasized their research on crash severity formulation, analysis, and mitigation in the transportation program at the University of Hawaii. Zhang has conducted several relevance projects: 1) Alcohol Influenced Driver Injury Severity Mitigation in Intersection-Related Crashes in New Mexico; 2) Exploratory Multinomial Logit Regression Model-based Teenage and Adult Driver Injury Severity Analyses in Rear-End Crashes; and 3) Mixed Logit Model-based Driver Injury Severity Investigations in Single- Vehicle and Multi-Vehicle Crashes on Two-lane Rural Highways. The first project provides valuable insights in driver behavior analysis under the influence of alcohol in intersection-related crashes. Findings of the second project can be beneficial to better understand the difference between teenage and adult drivers, and their specific attributes in rear-end crashes. The third project enhances our understanding of single-vehicle and multi-vehicle involved crashes and advances crash severity research methodology. All these projects would provide solid contributions to the proposed project. The modeling approaches used in those three projects can be helpful to this study. Our experiences and findings from these three projects will make the proposed project start at a higher level. Guided by the USDOT’s priorities to promote the safe, efficient and environmentally sound movement of goods and people, this project will develop crash record database and research findings are helpful for transportation agencies to develop cost-effective solutions to reduce crash severities and improve traffic safety performance in RITI communities. 

Project Summary

The transportation safety needs of Hawaiians and other minorities in Hawaii have not been addressed in the past. As a result, very little is known about them. In the first year of research we used aggregate data from FARS, Trauma Registry and other resources to summarize conditions in the state of Hawaii and at specific RITI areas of the state (Waianae, Waimanalo and the Big Island.) We also reached out to the Office of Hawaiian Affairs (OHA), the Bishop Estate which has been established to provide education to Hawaiians, the UH Manoa Native Hawaiian Affairs Specialist at the Chancellor’s office and the Native Hawaiian Science Engineering and Mathematics Program (NHSEMP )at the University of Hawaii (UH). Recently traffic safety has become a top issue on Hawaii; it may be a statistical abnormality or an early manifestation of distracted driving: Pedestrian fatalities in the first three months of 2018 reached 16 in Hawaii, which averages 26 fatalities per year based on our Quick Facts 2014-2016 analysis. (Only 23.5% of the year has gone by, but 61.5% of the historical pedestrian number of fatalities has occurred.) There is renewed urgency in the state on the issue of traffic safety equity between motorists and pedestrians.

In year 2 of CSET we propose to study two specific transportation facets of Hawaiians, part-Hawaiians and Pacific Islanders: Their driving behavior by using a driving simulator and their traffic safety perceptions by using a detailed, computer based survey.