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Understanding the safety performance of commercial motorcycles in urban transport using a system dynamics approach based on qualitative data

Aluko, Oluwasegun Oluyemi (2014) Understanding the safety performance of commercial motorcycles in urban transport using a system dynamics approach based on qualitative data. PhD thesis, University of Leeds.

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Para-transit modes generally offer important transport service in developing countries but are poorly regulated. Commercial motorcycle transport is one such essential service provided in many places across the world. It however has some problems of which poor safety record is chief. This research addresses the safety problem of commercial motorcycles from qualitative and systems perspectives. The aim is to identify and improve the understanding on how risk-taking-behaviour – a major cause of safety problems - is developed and learnt by the drivers. Risk-taking-behaviour is used to describe behaviours that can compromise safety which drivers often manifest as a result of the transport system’s characteristics. The aim is accomplished using two approaches: qualitative methods and system dynamics approach, based on qualitative and quantitative data collection. The research considers the choice of a typical medium city in Nigeria, Ado Ekiti, where commercial motorcycles are a major intra-city transport mode. Qualitative data was collected from stakeholders in the operation of commercial motorcycles and was used together with findings from the literature to obtain the description of the operation of this transport mode and to extract a list of influencing factors from which safety problems result. Key factors are found to relate to drivers’ characteristics, violation practices, enforcement and regulation, and training. While these factors are broad, the research is limited to how they contribute to drivers’ risk-taking behaviour. Further analysis of these factors’ interaction produces a set of propositions that describe the problem-causing structure within the system. These propositions deal with issues such as deterrence effect of enforcement operation, corruption in enforcement process, expensive motorcycle-acquisition problem, and drivers’ strenuous working condition, amidst others. These propositions make up the dynamic hypothesis for the system and are represented by a causal loop diagram. The dynamic hypothesis is then explored by formalising it into a quantitative model. This formalised model supports the dynamic hypothesis. The results of this research show that both the stock and flow model and the causal loop diagram might offer an opportunity for policy makers and stakeholders to better understand the structure and the dynamics of the commercial motorcycle drivers’ risk-taking-behaviour. Particularly, it shows that a mix of measures including improved enforcement of law is one main way by which driver behaviour can be improved.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Keywords: System dynamics, qualitative methods, commercial motorcycles, driver behaviour
Academic Units: The University of Leeds > Faculty of Environment (Leeds) > Institute of Transport Studies (Leeds)
Depositing User: Mr Oluwasegun Oluyemi Aluko
Date Deposited: 02 Apr 2015 09:06
Last Modified: 02 Apr 2015 09:06
URI: http://etheses.whiterose.ac.uk/id/eprint/8458

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