Imperial College London


Faculty of EngineeringDepartment of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Research Associate







610Skempton BuildingSouth Kensington Campus





Publication Type

7 results found

Singh R, Sood R, Graham D, 2022, Road traffic casualties in Great Britain at daylight savings time transitions: a causal regression discontinuity design analysis, BMJ Open, Vol: 12, ISSN: 2044-6055

Objectives: To determine whether daylight savings time (DST) transitions have an effect on road traffic casualties in Great Britain using causal regression discontinuity design analysis. We undertake aggregate and disaggregate spatial and temporal analyses to test the commonly referenced sleep and light hypotheses.Design: The study takes the form of a natural experiment in which the DST transitions are interventions to be evaluated. Two outcomes are tested: (i) the total number of casualties of all severities (ii) the number of fatalities.Data: Data are obtained from the UK Department for Transport STATS19 database. Over a period of 14 years between 2005 and 2018, 311,766 total casualties and 5,429 fatalities occurred 3 weeks either side of the Spring DST transition and 367,291 total casualties and 6,650 fatalities occurred 3 weeks either side of the Autumn DST transition. Primary outcome measure: A regression discontinuity design method (RDD) is applied. The presence of a causal effect is determined via the degree of statistical significance and magnitude of the average treatment effect.Results: All significant average treatment effects are negative (54 significant models out of 287 estimated), indicating that there are fewer casualties following the transitions. Overall, bootstrapped summary statistics indicate a reduction of 0.75 in the number of fatalities (95% CI: -1.61, -0.04) and a reduction of 4.73 in the number of total casualties (95% CI: -6.08, -3.27) on average per year at both the Spring and Autumn DST transitions combined.Conclusions: The results indicate minor reductions in the number of fatalities following the DST transitions, and thus our analysis does not support the most recent UK parliamentary estimate that there would be 30 fewer fatalities in Great Britain if DST were to be abolished. Furthermore, the results do not provide conclusive support for either the sleep or light hypotheses.

Journal article

Horcher D, Singh R, Graham D, 2022, Social distancing in public transport: mobilising new technologies for demand management under the Covid-19 crisis, Transportation, Vol: 49, Pages: 735-764, ISSN: 0049-4488

Dense urban areas are especially hardly hit by the Covid-19 crisis due to the limited availability of public transport, one of the most efficient means of mass mobility. In light of the Covid-19 pandemic, public transport operators are experiencing steep declines in demand and fare revenues due to the perceived risk of infection within vehicles and other facilities. The purpose of this paper is to explore the possibilities of implementing social distancing in public transport in line with epidemiological advice. Social distancing requires effective demand management to keep vehicle occupancy rates under a predefined threshold, both spatially and temporally. We review the literature of five demand management methods enabled by new information and ticketing technologies: (i) inflow control with queueing, (ii) time and space dependent pricing, (iii) capacity reservation with advance booking, (iv) slot auctioning, and (v) tradeable travel permit schemes. Thus the paper collects the relevant literature into a single point of reference, and provides interpretation from the viewpoint of practical applicability during and after the pandemic.

Journal article

Singh R, Graham D, Horcher D, Anderson Ret al., 2021, The boundary between random and non-random passenger arrivals: robust empirical evidence and economic implications, Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, Vol: 130, ISSN: 0968-090X

In this paper, we investigate the influence of train headways on passenger platform wait times using automated data from the London Underground metro system. For high frequency services, the literature suggests that passenger arrivals are random and that under perfectly random conditions with all other factors held constant, wait times are equivalent to half of the headway between trains. We test this hypothesis using large-scale smart card and vehicle location data, which enables the extraction of access times from total passenger journey times as well as the precise measurement of train headways. Using a semi para-metric regression modelling framework, we generate non-linear estimates of the relationship between access times and headway while conditioning for other service supply and demand factors. Marginal platform wait times are then derived numerically via an exposure-response model framework which accounts for potential confounding between the walking and waiting components of access times, thus enabling quantification of the unbiased impact of headways on wait times. For three lines in central London, we observe that marginal wait times transition from greater than half of the headway to approximately one third of the headway astrain frequencies decrease. The transition occurs in the range between 2-3 minute headways, lower than earlier estimates in the literature. A series of numerical simulations illustrate the importance of waiting time sensitivity in the optimisation of public transport services. In comparison with the standard wait time assumption, our exercise reveals that the degree of density economies is milder than what the literature suggests, and this may neutralise some of the economic justifications of high public transport subsidies

Journal article

Horcher D, Singh R, Graham DJ, 2021, Social distancing in public transport: mobilising new technologies for demand management under the Covid-19 crisis, Publisher: SPRINGER

Working paper

Singh R, Graham DJ, Anderson RJ, 2020, Quantifying the effects of passenger-level heterogeneity on transit journey times, Data-Centric Engineering, Vol: 1, Pages: e15-1-e15-28, ISSN: 2632-6736

In this paper we apply flexible data-driven analysis methods on large scale mass transit data to identify areas for improvement in the engineering and operation of urban rail systems. Specifically, we use data from automated fare collection (AFC) and automated vehicle location (AVL) systems to obtain a more precise characterisation of the drivers of journey time variance on the London Underground, and thus an improved understanding of delay. Total journey times are decomposed via a probabilistic assignment algorithm and semiparametric regression is undertaken to disentangle the effects of passenger-specific travel characteristics from network related factors. For total journey times, we find that network characteristics, primarily train speeds and headways, represent the majority of journey time variance. However, within the typically twice as onerous access and egress time components, passenger-level heterogeneity is more influential. On average, we find that intra-passenger heterogeneity represents 6% and 19% of variance in access and egress times, respectively, and that inter-passenger effects have a similar or greater degree of influence than static network characteristics. The analysis shows that while network-specific characteristics are the primary drivers journey time variance in absolute terms, a non-trivial proportion of passenger-perceived variance would be influenced by passenger-specific characteristics. The findings have potential applications related to improving the understanding of passenger movements within stations, for example, the analysis can be used to assess the relative way-finding complexity of stations, which can in turn guide transit operators in the targeting of potential interventions.

Journal article

Singh R, Graham DJ, Horcher D, Anderson RJet al., 2020, Decomposing journey time variance on urban metro systems via semiparametric mixed methods, Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, Vol: 114, Pages: 140-163, ISSN: 0968-090X

The availability of automated data for urban metro systems allows operators to accurately measure journey time reliability. However, there remains limited understanding of the causes of journey time variance and how journey time performance can be improved. In this paper, we present a semiparametric regression modelling framework to determine the underlying drivers of journey time variance in urban metro systems, using the London Underground as a case study. We merge train location and passenger trip data to decompose total journey times into three constituent parts: access times as passengers enter the system, on-train times, and egress times as passengers exit at their destinations. For each journey time component, we estimate non-linear functional relationships which we then use to derive elasticity estimates of journey times with respect to service supply and demand factors, including operational and physical characteristics of metros as well as passenger demand and passenger-specific travel characteristics. We find that the static fixed physical characteristics of stations and routes have the greatest influence on journey time, followed by train speeds, and headways, for which the average elasticities of total journey time are −0.54 and 0.05, respectively. The results of our analysis could inform operators about where potential interventions should be targeted in order to improve journey time performance.

Journal article

Singh R, Graham DJ, Anderson RJ, 2019, Characterizing journey time performance on urban metro systems under varying operating conditions, Transportation Research Record, Vol: 2673, Pages: 516-528, ISSN: 0361-1981

Automated fare collection (AFC) data provide opportunities for improved measurement of public transport service quality from the passenger perspective. In this paper, AFC data from the London Underground are used to measure service quality through an analysis of journey time performance under regular and incident-affected operating conditions. The analysis involves two parts: (i) parametrically defining the shape of journey time distributions, and (ii) defining three performance metrics based on the moments of the distributions to measure the mean and variance of journey times. The metrics show that mean journey times are longest during the afternoon peak across all lines analyzed, and are more variable during the afternoon and off-peak periods depending on the line. Under incident conditions, mean journey times range from 8% to 39% longer compared with regular conditions, depending on the line. Overall, the main application of this work is that the metrics presented here can be directly applied by operators to quantify customer journey time performance, and can be further extended for industry-wide application to compare performance across metro networks.There has been increasing recognition in the transport industry of the need for performance metrics that capture journey time reliability from a passenger perspective as opposed to the traditional operator-oriented indicators. In a report for the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) on service quality metrics used by metro operators, it is noted that the three most commonly reported metrics relating to journey time are train delay, wait times, and passenger journeys on-time (1). The first two metrics capture train performance from a schedule and headway adherence point of view. The third attempts to capture the experience of the user; however, it is recognized that operator-oriented indicators are rarely able to measure the true impact of passenger delay (2).The journey time distribution on

Journal article

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