Road Surface Characteristics and Condition: Effects on Road Users

  • Published: ARRB Transport Research Ltd, 1998
  • Authors: J. McLean and G. Foley
  • Date Added: 06 Mar 2013
  • Last Update: 06 Mar 2013
  • Format: pdf


To provide a review of the effects of road surface type and condition on safety, vehicle operating costs and noise generation.


Literature review.

Key Findings:

  • The skid resistance offered by a wet road surface decreases with increasing travel speeds.

  • At low speeds surface aggregate microtexture is the primary contributor to skid resistance.

  • Macrotexture and water film thickness influence the extent to which skid resistance decreases with increasing travel speed.

  • Wet weather RTI rates increase with decreasing skid resistance.

  • For rural arterial roads, wet weather RTI rates increase markedly for SCRIM measured Side Force Co-efficients less than 0.5.

  • European and US research has found that for rural roads with asphalt concrete surfaces, RTIs typically increase by about 5 per cent after resurfacing projects.


Skid resistance, Wet surface


Australian-based research but included as relevant to UK.