SAFER-SIM (Safety Research Using Simulation) is a collaborative research center with five universities which was created to support advancements in the application of simulation to transportation research in the areas of safety, operations, and roadway design.  The participating institutions include:

  • The University of Iowa
  • University of Central Florida
  • University of Massachusetts Amherst
  • University of Puerto Rico Mayagüez
  • University of Wisconsin Madison

These five universities are leaders in the evaluation of the impacts of the infrastructure on the safety of the transportation system and have a long history of using and developing cutting-edge simulation tools to aid this research. Each of the consortium members is home to one or more interactive driving simulators used by faculty, students, and staff from civil engineering, industrial and systems engineering, psychology, and computer science. Our research, technology transfer, and educational efforts are directed toward rapidly advancing and expanding the use of driving simulation to include:

  1. performance of model roadway engineering safety evaluations as example case studies of how to evaluate the safety of advances in infrastructure and reduce the time it takes to move a concept from the drawing board to the road;
  2. integration with microscopic traffic simulation to determine the impact on safety of advances in technologies which allow vehicles and the infrastructure to communicate with each other;
  3. incorporation of 3D roadway design tools that greatly reduce the time that it takes to build exact replicas of roadway hot spots and identify infrastructure contributions to crashes; and
  4. use of visualization in transportation planning and public outreach as a tool to put users on new road before they are built and as a way to bring safety into the very start of the planning process.



SAFER-SIM Projects involving UMass Amherst researchers (partial list):

Counter-Drone Solutions for Airports

Roadside Vegetation / Clear Zone Design

Safer Cycling

Roundabout Driving Behavior

Toll Plazas

Vehicle Automation and Safety

Driver Behavior Short Lanes

Visually Impaired Safety

Cross-Sectional Design and Driving Behavior

Toll Lane Configuration and Safety

Safety and Urban Freight

All-Red Clearance Intervals and Left Turn Lanes

Perception of Time and Driver Speed

Speeding on Curves

Distracted Driving on Time and Speed

Red Arrows and Flashing Yellow Arrows and Right Turns