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Students Win Best Paper Awards from Institute of Transportation Engineers

Amin Mohammadnazar, Nitesh Shah, and Iman Mahdinia.

From left to right: Amin Mohammadnazar, Nitesh Shah, and Iman Mahdinia

Transportation engineering graduate students Amin Mohammadnazar, Nitesh Shah, and Iman Mahdinia recently won Best Paper Awards at the Tennessee Section of Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) annual student paper competition.

Mohammadnazar’s paper, “How are physical conditions and driving errors of commercial large-truck drivers associated with injury severity in fixed-object collisions?” focuses on the safety of large-truck drivers whose often hazardous occupation is linked to the transportation of goods.

This study investigates the large-truck fixed-object crashes to find out how the physical conditions of large-truck drivers and the driving errors they make correlate with more severe injuries in crashes. Investigating fixed object crashes as frequent as single-vehicle crashes helps examine the pure effect of large-truck drivers’ behavior on the severity of large truck crashes.

Nitesh Shah’s paper, “Why do people take e-scooter trips? Big Data and Unsupervised Machine Learning Insights on Temporal and Spatial Usage Patterns,” takes a look at the patters of e-scooter usage.

His research proposes a framework for high-resolution analysis of micromobility data based on temporal, spatial, and weather attributes. Such knowledge can guide policymakers in making data-driven decisions regarding safety, sustainability, and mode substitution of emerging micromobility.

Iman Mahdinia’s paper, “Understanding the Role of Faster Emergency Medical Service Response in Survival Time of Pedestrians in Fatal Crashes,” focuses on the role of emergency medical service response time in pedestrians’ time-to-death involved in severe crashes. The findings of this study can provide traffic safety practitioners with some key factors that have the potential to save pedestrian lives.

“I am more than excited to see my colleagues being recognized and awarded for their diligence,” said fellow doctoral student Yi Wen, who is also president of the ITE student chapter. “All of them have spent a decent amount of time improving their writing skills to deliver the best message possible to transportation practitioners through research papers in the previous year.”