The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has published a Position Paper titled “Proposed changes to the driving and resting time rules and tachographs”. Amending Regulation (EC) No 561/2006 as regards on minimum requirements on maximum daily and weekly driving times, minimum breaks and daily and weekly rest periods and Regulation (EU) 165/2014 as regards positioning by means of tachographs ETSC welcomes the European Commission’s proposals on driving and resting times and the opportunity they give to improve road safety in the professional transport sector. While ETSC appreciates the rationale behind the proposals, it is crucial that any changes do not compromise the safety of those working in the professional transport sector, and by extension, other people using the road network.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has published the 34th PIN Flash Report “New EU vehicle safety standards essential to reducing child road deaths“, with the active contribution of NTUA. More than 8,000 children aged 0-14 years have been killed in road traffic collisions over the last ten years in the European Union, new data show. Half of the children killed were travelling in cars, a third were walking and 13% were cycling. ETSC says that measures that can reduce speeding are critical to preventing the deaths of more children and is calling for the EU to require vehicle safety technologies such as Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) and Automated Emergency Braking (AEB) that can detect pedestrians and cyclists to be fitted as standard on all new cars.
The UNECE Global Road Safety Model SafeFITS developed by NTUA is now freely available online. The primary objective of the state of the art “Safe Future Inland Transport Systems (SafeFITS)” model is to assist Governments and Decision Makers to identify the most appropriate road safety policies and measures, allowing them to simulate the impact and effectiveness of different possible interventions based on real-world data.
Jean Todt, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety stated that: SafeFITS provides a tool to help Member States review their current road safety situation and priorities, assisting them to determine the most appropriate and beneficial policy options for their national context, under the framework of the Decade of Action for Road Safety.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has just published a Report titled ‘Call for mandatory alcohol interlocks in vans, lorries and buses across the EU‘. ETSC is looking at how to reduce the 5.000 deaths still caused by drink-driving in the European Union each year and comes up with two main recommendations: the EU should require alcohol interlocks: a) to be fitted in all new professional vehicles and b) retrofitted to cars used by repeat drink-driving offenders.
Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of ETSC said that: the alcohol interlock programmes have proven to be one of the most effective measures for tackling repeat drink-driving offences and should be extended across the European Union.
The International Road Traffic and Accident Group (IRTAD) of the International Transport Forum (ITF/OECD) published recently a new Report, with the active contribution of NTUA, which examines how improving insights regarding the real number of alcohol-related road casualties worldwide can help to save lives. A total of 45 countries were surveyed with the help of an online questionnaire, and insightful statistics are presented in this Report.
IRTAD Chairman, Professor Fred Wegman, highlighted that: “With great certainty, the real number of alcohol-related road casualties is higher than reported in the official statistics”.
Simulation based safety margin assessment on speed variation between tangent to curved road alignment, 2018
A paper titled “Simulation based safety margin assessment on speed variation between tangent to curved road alignment” authored by Eleonora Papadimitriou, Stergios Mavromatis, Dimosthenis Pavlou and George Yannis is now published in Advances in Transportation Studies. This paper investigates the safety margins of drivers along tangent to curved road sections. A vehicle dynamics model is presented, allowing to assess the vehicle speed variation at impending skid conditions from tangent to curve on the basis of several parameters. The results suggest that drivers’ safety margins towards the examined curve are considerable, with the majority of the drivers using less than 55% of the available vehicle horse power. Higher initial speed was positively correlated with driving efficiency i.e. lower safety margins. On the contrary, a higher safety margin was associated with earlier deceleration before the curve.
Road safety is a major issue in Latin America and substantial actions are needed to reduce the number of road deaths and injuries. The International Transport Forum (ITF) released a report which describes and benchmarks road safety management and performance in ten Latin American countries: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay and Uruguay. The comparisons in this study allow identifying similarities and differences between countries’ road safety performance. It will be useful to policy makers in assessing weaknesses and strengths, and designing effective road safety policies that make use of the experiences in other countries.
e-Drive Academy is an Innovative Educational e-platform for Safe, Smart, Ecological Transport and Driving, developed and operated by the General Directorate of Road Safety of the Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks. e-Drive Academy provides all necessary educational services in order to develop an improved road safety culture and safe travelling for all road users, regardless of age, education or economic level. It aims to raise awareness of road users to adapt their behaviour to safer everyday travelling, with particular emphasis on consolidation of road safety issues and traffic safety education of children and preparing them as the responsible drivers of tomorrow. e-Drive Academy introduces for the first time the systematic teaching of Traffic Behaviour and Road Safety in Greek Primary Schools which start within 2018.
World Resources Institute (WRI) Ross Center for Sustainable Cities and the Global Road Safety Facility of the World Bank in their publication titled “Sustainable and Safe: A Vision and Guidance for Zero Road Deaths” indicated that the most effective way to prevent traffic deaths is a systemic approach that shifts responsibility away from the drivers and pedestrians using roads to the city planners and officials designing them.
Claudia Adriazola, WRI Director on Health and Road Safety, highlighted that analysis in 53 countries found that those that have taken a “Safe System” based approach have achieved both the lowest rates of fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants and the greatest reduction in fatality levels over the past 20 years.
The World Bank launched a publication titled: “The high toll of traffic injuries – Unacceptable and Preventable“, in which a comprehensive methodology is proposed in order to quantify both the income growth and social welfare benefits that safer roads could bring to developing countries. The analysis is based on data collected from 135 countries over 24 years, and demonstrated that reducing the number of road traffic injuries in developing countries not only increases income growth, but also generates substantial welfare benefits to societies.
Dr Soames Job, Head of the World Bank Global Road Safety Facility highlighted that: (a) Cutting traffic deaths and injuries by half could add 7 to 22% to GDP per capita over 24 years in select countries, (b) Welfare benefits equivalent to 6 to 32% of GDP per capita could be realized over the same period if traffic deaths and injuries were halved and (c) Road traffic injuries are the single largest cause of mortality and long-term disability among people aged 15-29, prime working age.
The European Commission’s Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move) published the Final Report of “The implementation of Directive 2006/126/EC on driving licences”, with the active contribution of NTUA. The third Directive on driving licences entered into force in January 2013 and provides harmonized rules aimed at enhancing drivers’ freedom to move, reducing the possibility of driving licence fraud and improving road safety in the EU. This Study explores the implementation of the third Directive on driving licences four years after implementation and assesses whether the introduced novelties contributed to achieving the objectives set by the Directive.
A paper titled “Accident Prediction Modelling: a literature review” authored by Tassos Dragomanovits, George Yannis, Alexandra Laiou, Francesca La Torre, Lorenzo Domenichini, Thomas Richter, Stephan Ruhl, Daniel Graham, and Niovi Karathodorou, is now published in the themed issue on transport safety and assessment of the Proceedings of ICE – Transport. This paper presents a comprehensive literature review on road traffic Accident Prediction Models (APMs) and Crash Modification Factors (CMFs). The focus is on motorways and higher ranked rural roads and the study was performed within the PRACT research project carried out for the European Road Authorities Organistion (CEDR). The review of CMFs focused on their background and development, the various methods for developing them and the key issues in their application. The review resulted in the development of an online APM and CMF Repository, with the aim of assisting the practical application of gathered experience on accident prediction.
The impact of nighttime driving to driver behavior and safety in cities with the use of driving simulator, 2017
A Diploma Thesis titled “The impact of nighttime driving to driver behavior and safety in cities with the use of driving simulator” was presented by Armira Kontaxi in November 2017. An experimental process on a driving simulator was carried out and regression statistical models were developed to investigate the impact of nighttime driving on the mean speed, on the standard deviation of the mean headway distance and on the mean reaction time and accident probability. The models’ application demonstrated that nighttime driving in urban area leads to an increase of the mean speed, of the standard deviation of the mean headway distance and of the mean reaction time, resulting thus to a significant increase of the accident probability.
The Transport Research and Innovation Monitoring and Information System – TRIMIS is an online platform for researchers to share and discuss innovation in mobility in Europe. It is an evolution of the Transport Research & Innovation Portal (TRIP), and incorporates TRIP’s database of over 10,000 EU and national transport research projects. TRIMIS monitors the implementation and effectiveness of the roadmaps developed by the Strategic Transport Research and Innovation Agenda (STRIA). TRIMIS analyses technology trends, research and innovation capacities and developments in the European transport sector, providing open-access information.
Analysis of the impact of nighttime driving to young drivers’ behavior and safety in rural roads with the use of driving simulator, 2017
A Diploma Thesis titled “Analysis of the impact of nighttime driving to young drivers’ behavior and safety in rural roads with the use of driving simulator” was presented by Eleftheria Kyriakouli in November 2017 aiming to analyze the impact of nighttime driving on driver behavior and safety in rural areas through a driving simulator experiment. Regression models were developed to analyze the impact of driving at night on the mean speed, on the mean headway distance of the vehicle and the mean reaction time and on the probability of causing an accident. The models’ application demonstrated that nighttime driving leads to small decrease of the mean speed and increase of the mean headway distance of the vehicle, which however cannot outweigh the increase of the mean reaction time in case of an accident and therefore resulting to an increase of accident probability.
A Diploma Thesis titled “Investigation of the effect of tourism on road accidents” was presented by Vasileios Bellos in November 2017. The objective of this Diploma Thesis is to investigate the effect of tourism on road accidents. For this purpose, data on road accidents in Greece for the five-year period of 2011-2015 were collected. Negative binomial regression models were developed and it was observed that both the tourist season and tourism as travelling purpose led to an increase in road accidents, with the highest increase being observed in tourist regions. The increase of the relative rate ratio of road accident involvement for foreign tourists in tourist regions may indicate the increased risk of foreign tourists compared to Greek drivers.
A Diploma Thesis titled “Investigation of the impact of weather conditions to young drivers’ behavior and safety in cities with the use of driving simulator” was presented by Maria Chaireti in November 2017. In order to achieve this objective, an experimental process on a driving simulator was carried out and regression models were developed to investigate the impact of weather conditions on the mean speed, the lateral position of the vehicle from the right borderline and the accident probability. The models’ application indicated that driving in the rain contributes to a small reduction in speed, but also to a significant increase in the probability of an accident. When driving in fog, drivers seem to be more cautious, as the lateral position of the vehicle from the right borderlines reduced and the probability of an accident decreased.
Analysis of the impact of weather conditions on the behaviour and safety of young drivers on rural roads with the use of driving simulator, 2017
A Diploma Thesis titled “Analysis of the impact of weather conditions on the behaviour and safety of young drivers on rural roads with the use of driving simulator” was presented by Anna-Maria Sourelli in November 2017. This Thesis focused on the analysis of the impact of weather conditions on the behaviour and safety of young drivers on rural roads. In order to achieve this objective, an experimental process using a driving simulator was carried out, in which 40 participants aged 20-28 years drove in different driving scenarios. Lognormal regression methods were used in order to develop the mathematical model of the average driving speed and binary logistic methods were used for the model of the accident probability. The models’ application revealed that rain increases significantly the accident probability, despite the observed speed reduction.
Modelling the effect of traffic regimes on safety of urban arterials: the case study of Athens, 2017
A paper titled “Modelling the effect of traffic regimes on safety of urban arterials: the case study of Athens” authored by Athanasios Theofilatos, George Yannis, John Golias and Eleni Vlahogianni is now published in Journal of Traffic and Transportation Engineering. To achieve the aims of the study, traffic and accident data during the period 2006–2011 from two major arterials in Athens were collected and processed. Firstly, a finite mixture cluster analysis was implemented to classify traffic into clusters. Afterwards, discriminant analysis was carried out in order to correctly assign new cases to the existing regimes by using a training and a testing set. Lastly, Bayesian logistic regression models were developed to investigate the impact of traffic regimes on accident likelihood and severity. The findings of this study suggest that urban traffic can be divided into different regimes by using average traffic occupancy and its standard deviation, measured by nearby upstream and downstream loop detectors. The results revealed potential specific hazardous traffic conditions. In general, high occupancy values increase accident likelihood, but tend to lead slight accidents, while PTWs are more likely to be involved in an accident, when traffic occupancy is high. Transitions from high to low occupancy also increase accident likelihood.
The Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move) of the European Commission released the Statistical Pocketbook 2017 ‘EU Transport in figures‘. In this Statistical Pocketbook, key road safety Tables are contained, together with several other Tables on transport statistics, providing a complete picture of current trends in transport in Europe. Data on road fatalities for the EU member states and associate countries allow for time series comparisons and country rankings.
The new online manual on road asset management announced by the World Road Association (PIARC) aims to help countries, whatever their stage of development, maintain their infrastructures and implement strategies to manage their road assets. This tool is intended for national and international decision-makers in fields concerning road safety, road network and ITS operation, and tunnels. Road infrastructures represent a key public asset in most countries, and traditional methods of managing the asset must progress to meet the requirements and constraints of the 21st century.
The International Road Traffic and Accident Database (IRTAD) of the International Transport Forum (ITF/OECD) published the full version of the Annual Report 2017, which provides an overview of road safety performance for 2015 in 40 countries, with preliminary data for 2016, and detailed reports for each country. It includes tables with cross country comparisons on key safety indicators and puts special emphasis on road safety for an ageing population, which represents a growing concern in many countries. The positive trend over the last few years of reduced road fatalities did not continue in 2015 and 2016. The 31 IRTAD member countries registered a 3.3% increase in road fatalities in 2015 compared to 2014. Finally, in 2016, the number of fatalities increased in 14 countries.
The SafetyCube European Road Safety Decision Support System (DSS) was recently launched, developed within EU Horizons 2020 research project SafetyCube with the active contribution of NTUA. SafetyCube DSS is a long waited powerful tool offering for the first time worldwide, scientific evidence on the effects of a large number of road safety risks and related countermeasures on behaviour, infrastructure, vehicle and post-crash care, providing a wealth of scientific evidence to support road safety decision making.
NTUA presentation in the launch event concerned: SafetyCube – the European Road Safety Decision Support System
European Commission launched a report following the C-ITS Platform Phase I report from January 2016 and addresses the common technical and legal framework necessary for the deployment of C-ITS and also takes the needs and possibilities of higher levels of automation into consideration. Following an invitation of the European Commission, industry representatives and public authorities have agreed on a further developed shared vision on the inter-operable deployment of Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) towards cooperative, connected and automated mobility (CCAM) in the European Union.
FIA Region I and its member Clubs are launching #ParkYourPhone, a campaign to encourage responsible smartphone use in traffic. For drivers, pedestrians and cyclists, only a few seconds of distraction can make a difference between life and death. FIA President and UN Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety, Jean Todt, said “Drivers, cyclists and pedestrians need to understand the dangers of using smartphones in traffic. To combat the 3,500 lives lost every day in road accidents, I urge all road users to park their phones when they are in traffic.”
FIA Region I published “Policy position on road infrastructure and tunnel safety”. Many of the problems that road users face today are linked with poor maintenance of road infrastructure. Therefore, FIA Region I welcomes the European Commission’s plan to revise and merge the road infrastructure safety management Directive and the Directive on minimum safety requirements for tunnels.
FIA Region I published “Policy position on event data recorders”. Conducting road accident research and subsequent establishment of liability, in some instances, requires use of event data recorders (EDR) and data storage systems for automated driving (DSSA). The European Commission is evaluating whether EDRs should become standard equipment under the revision of the General Safety Regulation. FIA Region I sees no compelling case to mandate EDRs in all new vehicles.
Comparative assessment of the behaviour of drivers with Mild Cognitive Impairment or Alzheimer’s disease in different road and traffic conditions, 2017
A paper titled “Comparative assessment of the behaviour of drivers with Mild Cognitive Impairment or Alzheimer’s disease in different road and traffic conditions” authored by Dimosthenis Pavlou, Eleonora Papadimitriou, Costas Antoniou, Panagiotis Papantoniou, George Yannis, John Golias and Sokratis G. Papageorgiou, is now published in Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, Volume 47, May 2017, pp. 122-131. The objective of this research was the analysis of the driving performance of drivers with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI) or Alzheimer’s disease (AD), in different road and traffic conditions, on the basis of a driving simulator experiment. The results of this research suggest that compensatory behaviours developed by impaired drivers are not adequate to counterbalance the direct effects of these cerebral diseases on driving skills. They also demonstrate that driving impairments increase as cognitive impairments become more severe (from MCI to AD).
Traffic and safety data analysis: from correlation to causation and policy support, Loughborough, 2017
NTUA Professor George Yannis has given an invited lecture at the School of Architecture, Building & Civil Engineering of Loughborough University on “Traffic and safety data analysis: from correlation to causation and policy support“. The Lecture focused on the various facets of road safety data, starting from the need for evidence based road safety policies, followed by key road safety analysis methods, the challenges of road safety measures’ assessment and the role of road user behaviour and concluding with an integrated road safety approach from data monitoring and analysis to policy support. A vivid discussion followed under the coordination of Loughborough University ITS Professor M.Quddus.
Safe Future Inland Transport Systems (SafeFITS), the Global Road Safety Model developed by NTUA for the United Nations – Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) with the support of the International Road Transport Union (IRU) was presented by NTUA Professor George Yannis, at the Global Forum for Road Traffic Safety (WP.1) as part of its Seventy-fifth session in 19 September 2017, in order to showcase current developments and obtain feedback from national representatives. The SafeFITS tool is built around a statistical model based on historical road safety data and the relations between different road safety indicators. SafeFITS will enable Governments to identify the most appropriate road safety measures and policies to save even more lives.
A Diploma Thesis titled “Development of driver speed models based on detailed driving data from smartphone sensors” was presented by Christina Gonidi in July 2017, with the support and data from OSeven Telematics. A large data set recorded per second was used, containing information about the exact position of the vehicle, its acceleration and deceleration and the point where 100 drivers performed harsh manoeuvers or speed changes or when they used their mobile phone, etc. In order to analyze the available data, six statistical linear regression models forecasting driver average speed were developed: one general model, two models for the periods inside or outside risky hours and three models for each road type (urban, rural and highways). The results demonstrated a strong correlation between the average speed and the distance covered by the driver as well as driver accelerations and harsh changes.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has published two position papers on regulations on general safety and on pedestrians.
Position Paper: “Revision of the General Safety Regulation“: Within the context of the EU target to halve road deaths between 2010 and 2020, the forthcoming revision of the General Safety Regulation will require bold action to ensure that road deaths continue to fall, and that vehicle safety improvements are not limited to the wealthiest consumers or member states.
Position Paper: “Review of the Pedestrian Protection Regulation 78/2009“. ETSC welcomes the initiative of the European Commission to review the legislation on the protection of pedestrians and other vulnerable road users (VRUs). It is of paramount importance that the EU takes steps to improve the safety of this often neglected category of road users.
A Diploma Thesis titled “Analysis of the effect of economic recession on road safety in Greece” was presented by Christos Batsos in September 2017. For this analysis, suitably processed road accident data during the period 2003-2014 have been exploited. It appears that the economic recession has led to a significant reduction in fatalities and serious injuries. The principal mechanisms bringing this decline about are the reduction of accidents with involvement of passenger cars, of young drivers and outside traffic junctions. These results indicate that apart from the decline of vehicle kilometers of travel, changes in road user behaviour might have contributed significantly to the overall improvement of road safety during the economic crisis.
Modelling mobile phone use impact on driver behaviour through the exploitation of data from smartphone sensors, 2017
A Diploma Thesis titled “Modelling mobile phone use impact on driver behaviour through the exploitation of data from smartphone sensors” was presented by Anastasia Argyropoulou in July 2017, with the support and data from OSeven Telematics. The aim of this Diploma Thesis was to examine and model the impact of mobile phone use on driver behaviour through the exploitation of data from smartphone sensors. To achieve this objective, data collected from 100 drivers who participated at a naturalistic driving experiment for four months were analysed through statistical modelling. The application of the models revealed that the factors affecting the harsh events are five, with the average driving speed being the main one, while the factors affecting the possibility of using the mobile phone while driving are six, with the average angular speed being the main one.
A paper titled “Meta-analysis of the effect of road work zones on crash occurrence” authored by Athanasios Theofilatos, Apostolos Ziakopoulos, Eleonora Papadimitriou, George Yannis, and Konstandinos Diamandouros is now published in Accident Analysis and Prevention. This paper presents formal meta-analyses of studies that have estimated the relationship between the number of crashes and work zone duration and length, in order to provide overall estimates of those effects on crash frequencies. All studies presented in this paper are crash prediction models with similar specifications. Meta-regression findings indicate that the main factors influencing the overall estimates of the beta coefficients are study year and region for work zone duration and study year and model specification for work zone length.
SafeFITS, the Global Road Safety Model developed by NTUA for the United Nations – Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) with the support of the International Road Transport Union (IRU) has been presented and discussed at the respective RoundTable in Geneva, on June 30th, 2017. SafeFITS Model is a global macroscopic road safety decision making tool aiming to assist governments and decision makers, both in developed and developing countries, to explore and choose the most appropriate road safety policies and measures in order to achieve tangible results. The SafeFITS Model is based on the related scientific knowledge available worldwide, with emphasis on recent academic research and project results.
NTUA Professor George Yannis presentation concerned:
The International Transport Forum (ITF) together with IRU, ITWF and ACEA launched a report titled: “Managing the Transition to Driverless Road Freight Transport”. This report considers how a transition to driverless road freight transport could happen. Today’s technology already makes it possible to operate automated trucks. Reduced reliance on humans to move road freight in the future could offer large cost savings for businesses and consumers. It could also disrupt the careers and lives of millions of professional truck drivers. Based on different scenarios for the large-scale introduction of automated road freight transport, this study makes recommendations to assist governments manage potential disruption and ensure a just transition for affected drivers.
Mild Cognitive Impairment and driving: Does in-vehicle distraction affect driving performance? – 2017
A paper titled “Mild Cognitive Impairment and driving: Does in-vehicle distraction affect driving performance?” authored by Ion N. Beratis, Dimosthenis Pavlou, Eleonora Papadimitriou, Dionysia Kontaxopoulou, Stella Fragkiadaki, George Yannis, and Sokratis G. Papageorgiou, is now published in Accident Analysis and Prevention. In-vehicle distraction is considered to be an important cause of road accidents. Drivers with Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI), because of their attenuated cognitive resources, may be vulnerable to the effects of distraction; however, previous relevant research is lacking. The main objective of the current study was to explore the effect of in-vehicle distraction on the driving performance of MCI patients, by assessing their reaction time at unexpected incidents and accident probability, through a driving simulator experiment. Overall, the current findings indicate, for the first time, that a common driving practice, such as the use of mobile phone, may have a detrimental impact on the driving performance of individuals with MCI.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has just published the 33th PIN Flash Report “Tapping the potential for reducing work-related road deaths and injuries“, with the active contribution of NTUA. Over 25,600 lives were lost on the road in the European Union in 2016, of those a large proportion were victims of work-related road (WRR) collisions. Even though the exact number is unknown, it is likely that up to 40% of all road deaths are work-related. It includes three parts: Part I: Work-related road safety (WRRS) data collection and reporting, Part II: The national legal framework for work-related road safety, and Part III: Public authority leadership in managing work-related road risks.
The Private Sector Global Coalition Together for Safer Roads (TSR) composed by 16 leading global companies has organised on June 19th, 2017, in Atlanta, USA a Round Table Discussion on New Trends and Opportunities in Road Safety. This Round Table Discussion demonstrated the high potential of technology and new trends for safety improvement as well as the role of the Member Companies to promote and exploit this potential. NTUA Professor George Yannis presentation concerned:
Time series and support vector machines to predict Powered-Two-Wheeler accident involvement and accident type, 2017
A paper titled “Time series and support vector machines to predict Powered-Two-Wheeler accident involvement and accident type” co-authored by Athanasios Theofilatos, George Yannis, Costas Antoniou, Antonis Chaziris and Dimitris Sermpis, is now published in Journal of Transportation Safety and Security. This study exploited real-time traffic and weather data from two major urban arterials in the city of Athens, Greece. Due to the high number of candidate variables, a random forest model was applied to reveal the most important variables. Then, the potentially significant variables were used as input to a Bayesian logistic regression model in order to reveal the magnitude of their effect on PTW accident involvement. The results of the analysis suggest that PTWs are more likely to be involved in multi-vehicle accidents than in single-vehicle accidents. It was also indicated that increased traffic flow and variations in speed have a significant influence on PTW accident involvement.
A paper titled ‘Simulation of Texting Impact on Young Drivers’ Behaviour and Safety on Motorways‘ co-authored by George Yannis, Alexandra Laiou, Panagiotis Papantoniou and Christos Gkartzonikas is now published in Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour. A driving simulator experiment was carried out, in which 34 young participants drove in different driving scenarios. Results suggest that texting leads to statistically significant decrease of the mean speed and to increased headway in normal and in specific traffic and weather conditions on motorways, as drivers appear to produce compensatory behavior while texting. Furthermore, texting leads to increased accident probability, probably due to longer reaction time of the driver at unexpected incidents.
Every day, 3,500 people are killed on the roads. Young people are particularly affected as road crashes are the number one cause of death of 15 to 29 year old. This is an alarming trend, a plague that needs to be stopped, a human, economic and social cost which has become unacceptable. The Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) together with our 245 member organisations around the world. Everyone has a role to play in making safer roads for all. The #3500LIVES campaign outlines the 10 rules that can help save your life and the lives of others. FIA encourages to sign up to the FIA Manifesto for Global Road Safety which calls on all Governments to prioritise road safety and introduce effective legislation on key risk factors on the road.
The School of Civil Engineering of Thessaloniki Mediterranean College organised with great success a forum titled: “The Vision Zero Concept: the role of Civil Engineer on Road Safety” on Monday 27 March 2017. This initiative’s goal was to approach road safety, covering three basic branches: the driver, the vehicle and the environment.
Comparative analysis of young drivers behaviour in normal and simulated conditions in urban roads, 2017
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Comparative analysis of young drivers behaviour in normal and simulated conditions in urban roads‘ was presented by Danai Voutsina in March 2017. Data have been selected through an experimental process, in which the participants have driven in real urban conditions and on a driving simulator, while performing different scenarios. By using lognormal regression modelling, the impact of the driving environment, the specific characteristics of each driver as well as the driving style to the average vehicle speed change was investigated. The model application revealed that absolute values of drivers’ traffic performance varies between simulated and real driving conditions. However, speed difference between fast and slow drivers is very much the same at the two driving environments, as is also speed difference between drivers talking and not talking to the co-driver at the two driving environments.
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Investigating the acceptance of autonomous vehicles by Greek drivers‘ was presented by Charalampos Souris in March 2017. A stated-preference approach was used that included hypothetical scenarios of cost, time, and safety, which were distributed in a specially developed questionnaire. By using models of logistic regression and the respective utility functions it was possible to extract a mathematical description of the drivers’ attitude towards autonomous vehicles. Results show that the Greek drivers attitude is dependent on the cost, time, and level of safety of the autonomous vehicles, the existence of driving support systems (GPS, parking assistant) in their cars today, their opinion on the traffic of autonomous public transport and taxis on the roads, their driving experience, age, and family income.
In the context of the Fourth UN Global Road Safety Week, WHO has released a new Report on Managing Speed, which highlights that excessive and inappropriate speed is among the key risks for road traffic deaths and injuries, contributing to around one third of road traffic fatalities in high-income countries and up to one half in low- and middle-income countries. Safe speeds are among the four main elements of the “safe systems approach” to road safety, along with safe roads and roadsides, safe vehicles and safe road users.
The Netherlands’ Institute for Road Safety Research (SWOV) published two reports on Automated Vehicle Safety. The first Report concerns “Safe interaction between cyclists, pedestrians and automated vehicles; What do we know and what do we need to know?” and identifies what is needed to know in order to ensure that an automated driving system, particularly during the transition period, does not compromise the safety of pedestrians and cyclists.
The second Report concerns “Safely towards self-driving vehicles; New opportunities, new risks and new challenges during the automation of the traffic system” and describes which developments can be expected during the automation of the traffic system and discusses the implications of these developments for road safety: the opportunities and the risks.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) released a Report concerning Drug Driving in Europe, Policy measures for national and EU action, authored by Laurence Atchison. Driving under the influence of psychoactive drugs leads to deaths and serious injuries on Europe’s roads. Both illicit and licit drugs can disrupt the psychological state of the driver and impair their driving performance. Using multiple drugs simultaneously, or in conjunction with alcohol, increases the risk of a collision even further. This report aims to provide a summary of drug driving across Europe, drawing on the latest research to provide an overview of how drugs affect collision risk and the prevalence of different types of drugs in different road users and regions.
The World Road Association – PIARC recently published a Report titled: “Risk Management for Emergency Situations“. In this Report, an effort was made to analyze world practices in emergency situation management and present integrated frameworks for risk and business continuity planning. This has produced recommendations for best practice in managing risk and emergency situations both generally and across the road network in particular.
The Hellenic Statistical Authority (ELSTAT) recently announced the results of the Road traffic accidents survey for the 2016. This infographic visualises data regarding accidents, persons killed and persons injured in 2016 in Greece. In Attica, approximately 6.000 accidents took place, 7.000 persons persons (seriously or slightly) injured, and 201 persons killed.
Investigation of powered 2-wheeler accident involvement in urban arterials by considering real-time traffic and weather data, 2016
A paper titled ‘Investigation of powered 2-wheeler (PTW) accident involvement in urban arterials by considering real-time traffic and weather data‘ co-authored by Athanasios Theofilatos and George Yannis is now published in Traffic Injury Prevention Journal. This study exploited real-time traffic and weather data from two major urban arterials in the city of Athens, Greece. Because of the high number of candidate variables, a random forest model was applied to reveal the most important variables. Then, the potentially significant variables were used as input to a Bayesian logistic regression model in order to reveal the magnitude of their effect on PTW accident involvement. The results of the analysis suggest that PTWs are more likely to be involved in multi-vehicle accidents than in single-vehicle accidents. It was also indicated that increased traffic flow and variations in speed have a significant influence on PTW accident involvement.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) released a discussion paper concerning “Developing voluntary global performance targets for road safety risk factors and service delivery mechanisms“. This paper puts forward a set of voluntary global performance targets for the prevention of road traffic injuries, as well as the indicators that will be used to assess their achievement for Member States consideration and assist global road safety policy efforts.
Selected targets should be based on sound scientific evidence, have related indicators that are measurable, and politically supported. This paper proposes a selection of global targets based on these considerations, and specifies a limited set of indicators that may be used by participating countries to monitor progress towards the achievement of these targets.
A paper titled “Does the diagnosis of Alzheimer’s Disease implies immediate revocation of a driving license?” authored by Sokratis G. Papageorgiou, Ion N. Beratis, Dionysia Kontaxopoulou, Stella Fragkiadaki, Dimosthenis Pavlou, and George Yannis is now published in International Journal of Clinical Neurosciences and Mental Health. Based on previous findings, patients with Alzheimer’s Disease (AD) commonly present increased driving difficulties at a level that clearly supports the discontinuation of driving. Nonetheless, some patients with AD, retain adequate driving skills that are similar to those of cognitively intact individuals of similar age, whereas drivers with MCI present an accentuated risk to develop driving difficulties, but their performance is not consistently worse than that of healthy control drivers. Under this perspective this research suggests the need for implementing a personalized approach when taking decisions about the driving competence of drivers with AD and MCI that is based on the effective synthesis of multimodal driving-related indexes by the specialities of neurology, neuro-psychology and traffic engineering.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) released a Report concerning Targeted safety measures needed to prevent road deaths among young drivers, authored by Laurence Atchison. Zero tolerance on drink driving, additional hazard perception training and graduated driver licensing schemes should become the norm in order to help tackle the disproportionate risks faced by young drivers and motorcycle riders in Europe, according to this new ETSC Report.
Commenting on the report, Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council said: “With thousands of young people’s lives still being tragically cut short every year in Europe, we need policymakers to commit urgently to introducing smart, cost-effective and proven measures that can bring these numbers down.
The International Transport Forum (ITF) launched recently a Draft Discussion Paper titled “Overcoming Obstacles to Implementing Safety Management Systems”, prepared for the Roundtable on Safety Management Systems (March 23-24, 2017, Paris), authored by Jouni Lappalainen. The purpose of this paper is to examine the obstacles to implementing safety management systems and to discuss solutions for overcoming those obstacles in the four modes of transport: aviation, maritime, rail and road. These four transport modes can be considered to represent safety critical industries.
The Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks, realizing the objectives of the policy agenda and the commitments under the National Action Plan (ITS Action Plan 2012), launched for the first time, a particularly important action which is expected to mark a new era for Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS) in Greece: the National Architecture for Intelligent Transport Systems.
The action was carried out by teams of experts coordinated by the Department of Planning and Development of Transport of the Ministry and is based on internationally accepted concepts. The action is based on the involvement of all stakeholders through wide and open consultation process.
Thousands of students, teachers and citizens visited the “Zappeion” in Athens, from 9-16 December 2016, and took part in the 8-day Seminar about Traffic Behaviour, within the framework of the event “Road Safety: Education and Culture” organized by the Institute of Road Safety (RSI) “Panos Mylonas” and the European Commission Representation in Greece in cooperation with the Zappeion Hall, under the auspices of the Hellenic Parliament. More than 1,000 elementary students, middle school, high school, preschool children and pupils who take part in programs of the Hellenic Parliament Foundation, and hundreds of teachers and citizens had a great opportunity to try the unique live activities of the RSI, actively participating in the 8-day Traffic Behaviour program.
ETSC released a report concerning Alcohol interlocks and drink driving rehabilitation in the EU-Guidelines for Member States. Across Europe there is still a group of hard core drink driving offenders that seem unwilling or unable to change their behaviour despite the use of traditional countermeasures such as awareness campaigns, fines and driving bans. For this group, the introduction of an alcohol interlock programme seems to be an effective measure.
The report consists of three parts: The first provides an overview of the background to the drink driving problem and some traditional countermeasures. The second part profiles alcohol interlock offender programmes from five European countries. The third and final part presents some main practical guidelines for national authorities that are considering an alcohol interlock programme.
For the first time the United Nations has included road deaths and injuries as a Sustainable Development Goal (SDG 3.6 – By 2020, halve the number of global deaths and injuries from road traffic accidents). iRAP believes that improving the world’s roads to a 3-star or better rating is a key way to achieve the SDG target of halving road deaths and injuries by 2020. In the following links a range of materials that iRAP is developing to support advocates for 3-star or better roads are available.
A paper titled “Innovative motor insurance schemes: A review of current practices and emerging challenges” authored by Dimitris Tselentis, George Yannis, and Eleni Vlahogianni, is now published in Accident Analysis & Prevention, , with the support and data from OSeven Telematics. The objective of this paper is to provide a review of the most popular and often implemented methodologies related to Usage-based motor insurance (UBI). UBI schemes, such as Pay-as-you-drive (PAYD) and Pay-how-you-drive (PHYD), are a new innovative concept that has recently started to be commercialised around the world. The main idea is that instead of a fixed price, drivers have to pay a premium based on their travel and driving behaviour. There is evidence that UBI implementation would eliminate the cross-subsidies phenomenon, which implies less insurance costs for less risky and exposed drivers. It would also provide a strong motivation for drivers to improve their driving behaviour, differentiate their travel behaviour and reduce their degree of exposure by receiving feedback and monitoring their driving preferences and performance, which would result in crash risk reduction for each driver individually but also for the whole population.
The prestigious Decade of Action Special Award for Road Safety for 2017 goes to the International Transport Forum (ITF) . The organisation is being honoured for its leadership in improving delivery of road safety across the world and its recent report “Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries: Leading a Paradigm Shift in Road Safety” specifically. “The new report comes at a time when the world needs to change up a gear or two to accelerate efforts to reduce the unacceptable toll of death and serious injury on our roads”, said Prince Michael of Kent, patron of the award. “It is a most welcome addition to the all-important bank of knowledge available to governments and is a fine example of the leadership shown by ITF.”
The ITF Report “Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries: Leading a Paradigm Shift to a Safe System“, was prepared by the ITF Safe System Implementation Working Group composed by international road safety experts including NTUA Prof. George Yannis.
A draft proposal for the constitution of a Road Safety Trust Fund was launched for consultations at the first Global Sustainable Transport Conference in Ashgabat. The proposed UN Road Safety Fund will aim at bridging the gaps in the mobilization of adequate resources to fund road safety projects at local, national and global levels. The total additional grant funding for road safety needed to achieve the SDG road safety targets is estimated at $770 million annually over the next decade. The proposed UN Road Safety Fund will serve as a vehicle to leverage additional funding. It is estimated that every $100 million contributed to the Fund would support:
- the leveraging of $3.4 billion of country and city road safety investment;
- the saving of 64,000 lives; and
- the averting of 640,000 serious injuries.
With $770 million of grant funding per year over the coming decade, the proposed UN Road Safety Fund could save 5 million lives and avert 50 million serious injuries in low and middle-income countries.
The European Commission adopted recently a European Strategy on Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS), a milestone initiative towards cooperative, connected and automated mobility. The Strategy will make it possible to deploy vehicles that can “talk” to each other and to the transport infrastructure as of 2019, aiming also to enhancing road safety on EU roads. The main components of the C-ITS Strategy are:
- Avoid a fragmented internal market
- Define and support common priorities
- Use a mix of communication technologies
- Address security and data protection issues
- Develop the right legal framework
- Cooperate at international level
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has published a Position Paper titled “The European Union’s Role in Promoting the Safety of Cycling” containing proposals for a safety component in a future EU Cycling Strategy, authored by Ellen Townsend. This paper builds on recent calls for the European Commission to come forward with a cycling strategy for the European Union and ETSC supports the need for co-ordinated European action on cycling and welcomes a pan-European strategy. This Position Paper is designed to serve as inspiration for the safety component of such a strategy and will look at initiatives within these different areas of action of relevance to cyclist safety.
The World Health Organization has released a new Report titled: “Post-crash response: Supporting those affected by road traffic crashes” outlining policies for improving health care and other systems to provide the key elements of post-crash support, addressing the fifth pillar of the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020. A broad and integrated approach to support survivors and families can mitigate the short- and long-term effects of experiencing a road traffic crash and can help those affected return to function and independence at home and at work. An effective post-crash response requires integration of injury care, mental health services, legal support and legislation, and data on road traffic crashes and injuries.
The Conference of European Directors of Roads (CEDR) has recently released a Position Paper titled “Main Road Safety Challenges for European Road Directors the next 5-10 years – Towards the Vision Zero“. The objective of this paper is to highlight the key challenges for the National Road Administrations and to emphasise the need to maintain an ongoing open and creative discussion across the National Road Administrations; to demonstrate the need to work together to advance Road Safety. The key challenges concern: a) the improvement of safety of the existing road infrastructure, b) speeds in harmony with road infrastructure, c) the improvement of safety of vulnerable road users, d) the evaluation and deployment of intelligent transport systems.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has launched a new Report on Managing Grey Fleet Safety: A Short Guide for Companies Whose Staff Drive Their Own Cars For Work. When a driver uses their own vehicle for work, they are still under the responsibility of the employer, and this presents a real challenge for managing associated work related road safety risk. Employers may think that it is easier to manage employees using their own cars for work, instead of a company car fleet. However once all of the considerations are taken into account this may not be the case. This guide has been produced to assist organisations review and improve grey fleet management, with a specific focus on safety concerns. It will explain the legal responsibilities as well as the business benefits of an effective grey fleet management policy. It will also explain how grey fleet road risks can be reduced through risk assessment, and stress the importance of integrating grey fleet policy in company procedures and management responsibility.
The Road Safety Unit of DG Move of the European Commission has recently released a Report titled “Study on Serious Road Traffic Injuries in the EU” prepared by SWOV, Loughborough University and BAST. According to the European Commission, 135,000 people are seriously injured on European roads every year and while the number of deaths has fallen dramatically over the last decade, serious injuries have declined at a much slower rate. It is therefore recommended in this study that the EU should set a target to reduce the number of people seriously injured in road collisions.
The new study examined real world collision data and investigation outcomes from across Europe in an attempt to boost understanding of the most common collision situations that result in serious injuries. The data reveal many of the key risk factors and victim profiles which could help member states identify the best measures to reduce such collisions.
e-Drive Academy is an Innovative Educational e-platform for Safe, Smart, Ecological Transport and Driving, developed and operated by the General Directorate of Road Safety of the Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks. e-Drive Academy provides all necessary educational services in order to develop an improved road safety culture and safe travelling for all road users, regardless of age, education or economic level. The objective of e-Drive Academy is to raise awareness of road users to adapt their behaviour to safer everyday travelling, with particular emphasis on consolidation of road safety issues and traffic safety education of children and preparing them as the responsible drivers of tomorrow.
Correlation of road safety performance with social and economic indicators in the European Union 2016
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Correlation of road safety performance with social and economic indicators in the European Union’ was presented by Ioannis Zantiris in November 2016. For this correlation a database was developed containing the most recent data regarding population, road fatalities, gross domestic product per capita, human development index, unemployment rate and several other economic and social indicators for the twenty eight countries of the European Union. Subsequently, multiple linear regression models were developed and applied for all countries and for groups of countries (northwestern, eastern, southern). The analysis demonstrated that the Human Development Index has the most important impact than any other parameter and its increase leads to road fatalities decrease.
The 29th ICTCT workshop took place in Lund, Sweden, on 20-21st October 2016 and offered a multidisciplinary forum for lively discussion among international experts in an open-minded and friendly atmosphere. The workshop mainly dealt with the question how to assess traffic safety. According to the philosophy of ICTCT, the safety assessment should not only rely on accident data but actively utilise other non-accident indicators that reflect the accident risk. Such methods are widely used in in rail and air transport, while acceptance is still low among road safety professionals.
NTUA presentations concerned:
The 23rd Meeting of the International Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD) organised by the International Transport Forum (ITF) took place in Rome, on 12-14 October 2016.
NTUA presentation concerned: Design of the European Road Safety Decision Support System
ITF / IRTAD together with the Horizons 2020 project SaferAfrica organised a workshop regarding Road Safety in Africa which took place with great success on 12 October 2016, at Sapienza University of Rome, The workshop focused on “Fostering strategic cooperation between Africa and Europe on road safety” and it included two sessions: 1. Road safety policies and strategies and 2. Support for the road safety improvement in Africa.
NTUA presentation concerned: Road safety knowledge and data in Africa
The International Transport Forum has recently published an evidenced based Research Report titled “Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries: Leading a Paradigm Shift to a Safe System“, prepared by the Safe System Implementation Working Group composed by international road safety experts including NTUA Prof. George Yannis. This ITF Safe System Report was presented at a dedicated Road Safety Seminar, held with great success on 3 October 2016 in Paris France. All presentations are now available.
This Report is relying on experiences in ITF/OECD countries, with practical policy recommendations for the attention of policy makers on the various steps in implementing a safe system approach. A Safe System is based on the premise that road crashes are both predictable and preventable, and that it is possible to move towards zero road deaths and serious injuries. This, however, requires a fundamental rethink of the governance and implementation of road safety policy.
The Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move) of the European Commission released the Statistical Pocketbook 2016 ‘EU Transport in figures‘. In this Statistical Pocketbook, key road safety Tables are contained, together with several other Tables on transport statistics, providing a complete picture of current trends in transport in Europe. Data on road fatalities for the EU member states and associate countries allow for time series comparisons and country rankings.
On the occasion of the World Day of Alzheimer Disease (21/09/2016), the Department of Mental Disorders / Dementia of the Second Neurological Clinic of the University Hospital “Attikon” organized with great success an informational event on the latest developments in Alzheimer’s disease and other dementia diseases. The event includes speeches by professors of the Athens University Medical School and specialized health professionals who answered questions in relation to the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and other topics related dementias.
Dr. Dimosthenis Pavlou made two presentations which concerned two critical questions:
Dimosthenis Pavlou has successfully defended his PhD dissertation titled: Traffic and safety behaviour of drivers with neurological diseases affecting cognitive functions. This PhD thesis was carried out at the Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering at the School of Civil Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens under the supervision of Prof. George Yannis. The impact of brain pathologies on reaction time, accident probability, driving errors, and driving performance was under investigation. The driving behaviour was examined in terms of both traffic and safety behaviour and the neurological diseases affecting cognitive functions concerned Alzheimer’s disease (AD), Parkinson’s disease (PD), and Mild Cognitive Impairment (MCI). A large-scale driving simulator experiment was carried out, comprising a medical/neurological and neuropsychological assessment of 225 drivers, and a set of driving tasks for different scenarios. An innovative statistical analysis methodology has been developed and implemented, based on Regression Models, Principal Component Analysis and Structural Equation Models.
Selected papers of the Transport Research Arena Conference which took place in Paris in 2014 are now published by ISTE/Wiley. A special volume co-edited by NTUA Prof. George Yannis, and ENPC Prof. Simon Cohen is dedicated to Traffic Safety, containing theoretical chapters and practical case studies addressing topics such as road safety management and policies, accident analysis and modeling, vulnerable road users’ safety, road infrastructure safety, ITS and railway safety.
A four page brochure titled ‘How 3-star or better roads can cut death and trauma’ is now available by EuroRAP aiming to support its members and road safety professionals across the continent in their meetings with key policy makers. The brochure provides key statistics and cost-benefit analyses to make the economic case for improving road infrastructure in order to help reduce deaths on Europe’s roads by 2020 to less than 50% of their 2010 total of 31,500. It features case studies and national 3-star policy targets and sets out recommended policy goals.
A paper titled ‘Mobile phone use, speed and accident probability of young drivers‘ authored by George Yannis, Leonidas Roumpas and Eleonora Papadimitriou is now published in Advances in Transportation Studies. A driving simulator experiment was carried out, in which young participants drove in different driving scenarios: urban and interurban areas, good or rainy weather, with or without the occurrence of unexpected incidents. Log-normal linear regression waw used to analyze the influence of mobile phone use and other parameters on the mean speed of drivers, whereas binary logistic regression was used to analyze the influence of mobile phone, change in speed and other parameters on accident probability. The results suggest that mobile phone use leads to statistically significant overall decrease of the mean speed. However, some drivers increased their speed during the mobile phone conversation, a case which has received little attention in the literature. Mobile phone use leads to significant increase of accident probability, indicating that the speed reduction when using a mobile phone is not sufficient to counterbalance the overall increased risk, especially when an unexpected incident occurs.
The International Road Traffic and Accident Database (IRTAD) of the International Transport Forum (ITF/OECD) published recently the full version of the Annual Report 2016, which comprises a synthesis of the main trends and road safety indicators for the year 2014 and preliminary data for the year 2015. It presents longer-term trends in order to better understand the developments taking place in the different countries.
While the 32 IRTAD member countries made good progress in reducing road deaths in the first half of the UN Decade of Action – the number of road fatalities fell by 8.8% between 2010 and 2014 – this positive trend faltered in 2015 when the number of road deaths increased in at least 19 countries, while only nine countries managed to reduce or stabilise their road death toll in 2015. Detailed validated reports for each country are illustrated in the full version of the IRTAD Annual Report. NTUA has contributed to the detailed report for Greece.
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Investigation of declared and revealed driver behaviour using vehicle diagnostics’ was presented by Natalia Vittoratou in July 2016, with the support and data from OSeven Telematics. The aim of this diploma thesis is the correlation of stated and revealed driver’s behavior with the use of vehicle on-board diagnostics (OBD) data. On that purpose, a large data set from a driving behavior experiment was exploited, which recorded continuously (per second during a period of three months) the behaviour of 17 drivers. These data concerned harsh acceleration and braking, average traffic speed and mileage travelled. Drivers’ stated behaviour was investigated through a corresponding questionnaire. For the data analysis, a mathematical statistical model was developed using linear regression. The results demonstrated a strong correlation between harsh brakings and accelerations on one hand and the number of accidents, the annual income and the declared frequency of harsh braking on the other.
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Attitudes of European drivers towards distraction’ was presented by George Vasilakis in July 2016. Responses of a representative sample of 17.000 European drivers are analyzed from the European survey ESRA, conducted in 2015. The analysis of driver behavior is carried out with the use of statistical methods of cluster analysis and negative binomial distribution. Through the method of cluster analysis, four different groups of European countries were ultimately formed with larger and smaller population, high and low income and the characteristics of each group were identified. Τhe results of cluster analysis were used at the negative binomial distribution in which the answers of Europeans to selected questions were summarized in the basic factors describing their driving behavior, the use of mobile phone during driving and their views on issues related to road behaviour of other drivers, the existing measures for road safety, and driver’s distraction.
A Diploma Thesis titled “Correlation of driver characteristics and its safety performance” was presented by Vasiliki Agathangelou in July 2016, with the support and data from OSeven Telematics. Data from an experiment on driver behaviour assessment from an expert was exploited, using on-road driving in conjunction with a self-evaluation questionnaire. The analysis of the drivers’ behaviour was carried out through factor and linear regression analyses. Three groups that characterise drivers’ perception of careless, aggressive and cautious driving behaviour were derived from factor analysis. Moreover, linear regression analysis revealed that driving experience, headways, self-reported driving skills and defensive driving affect positively the overall on-road driving performance score. It was ascertained that driving experience leads to statistically significant increase in overall on-road driving performance score.
A Diploma Thesis titled ‘Analysis of aggressive driving characteristics in Greece‘ was presented by Eva Kalpaxidi in July 2016. The aim of the present Diploma Thesis is the analysis of the characteristics of aggressive driving in Greece exploiting the Pan-European survey of road user’s attitudes: ESRA. Factor Analysis as well as Binary Logistic Regression and Negative Binomial Regression Models were developed in order to demonstrate the correlation between aggressive driving, police checks and the number of accidents caused by aggressive driving. The statistical models developed demonstrated that gender and age play a major role in aggressive driving, the majority of the drivers take positions against speeding and aggressive driving is described by three different characteristics: actions against other drivers, negative feelings and risk-taking actions while driving.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has just published the PIN Flash Report ‘How traffic law enforcement can contribute to safer roads‘, with the contribution of NTUA. Exceeding speed limits, drink or distracted driving and failure to wear a seat belt are still the leading causes of death and serious injury on European roads. Excessive or inappropriate speed is a primary factor in about one third of road deaths and an aggravating factor in many more. Drink driving causes as much as 25% of all road deaths in the EU. ETSC estimates that 900 car occupant deaths would have been prevented in 2012 if 99% of those in cars in collisions had been wearing safety belts. Driver distraction, including mobile phone use, is increasingly a factor in fatal collisions. Enforcement of road traffic laws is an essential component in preventing death and injury.
The PRACT Repository is a new online road safety toolcontaining the most recent Accident Prediction Models and Crash Modification Factors, highlighting effectiveness of road safety infrastructure measures worldwide, for use by road safety decision makers and practitioners worldwide.
This Repository has been developed within the framework of the project PRACT, (Predicting Road ACcidents-a Transferable methodology across Europe) carried out by the University of Florence, the National Technical University of Athens, the Technical University of Berlin and the Imperial College London, commissioned by theConference of European Directors of Roads.
The basic assumption on which the PRACT Repository is built is that Accident Prediction Models (APM) and Crash Modification Factors (CMF) can be transferred to conditions different from the ones for which they have been developed, if selected based on scientifically valid criteria and adapted to local conditions based on historical crash data.
Sensor-Based Multi-Dimensional Approaches for Extracting Power-Two-Wheeler Driving Patterns in Various Road Environments and Lighting Conditions – 2016
A paper titled ‘Sensor-Based Multi-Dimensional Approaches for Extracting Power-Two-Wheeler Driving Patterns in Various Road Environments and Lighting Conditions’ authored by Eleni Vlahogianni, George Yannis and John Golias is now published in Advances in Transportation Studies. Data from a naturalistic Powered Two Wheelers (PTW) driving experiment are exploited using principalcomponent analysis to identify the critical PTW driving characteristics and their combinations with the finalaim to reveal useful insights on the PTW driving patterns emerging on the road. Data are collected indifferent road environments, ranging from urban road arterials to suburban roads. The analyses reveal three prevailing PTW driving patterns: i. Acceleration, ii. Maneuvering, and iii. Braking. These patterns areobserved in both inside and outside urban areas and regardless of the lighting conditions (daylight, dusk, andnight). Nevertheless, although acceleration and maneuvering patterns contain the same driving variables inall driving cases examined, braking is conducted in a varying manner with respect to the type of the area andthe time of day.
In conjunction with World Day for Safety and Health at Work on April 28, Together for Safer Roads (TSR), the Coalition of global private sector companies, released the Advancing Road Safety Best Practices for Companies and Their Fleets report.
The Report outlines practices that companies can use to keep employees, partners, and contractors safe on the world’s roads, as well as minimize costs. Globally, between 25 and 33 percent of road crashes are work-related and 36 percent of occupational deaths are due to crashes. While these are sobering and devastating human costs, there are also great financial costs. Worldwide, employers incur costs of USD $518 billion per year due to road traffic collisions.
ETSC has just released a position paper titled: ‘A Proposal for a strategy to reduce the number of people seriously injured on EU roads‘. ETSC recommends to the EU to adopt a target of a 35% reduction between 2014 and 2020 in the number of people seriously injured. A 35% reduction over the period 2014-2020 would be similarly challenging for Member States to the target to halve road deaths between 2010 and 2020. In addition, the EU should adopt a joint strategy including measures against which delivery can be made accountable.
A report on Prioritising the Safety Potential of Automated Driving in Europe is now released by the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC). Automated driving technologies are already preventing collisions and deaths on our roads. The purpose of the report is to give an overview of automated driving, identify the main safety benefits and offer some key recommendations for the near future for the EU and its Member States to create a regulatory environment that prioritises safety.
The Road Safety Unit of DG Move of the European Commission has recently released a Report titled ‘Risks and countermeasures for road traffic of elderly in Europe’ prepared with the active contribution ofIMOB, NTUA, LAB and ERF.
The purpose of this Report was to provide a comprehensive view on the situation of elderly road users in traffic and to provide an action plan containing recommendations for the most promising measures to be taken at the EU-level in the light of developing a proactive strategy to enhance the road safety of the elderly in the (near) future. This strategy is developed by:
A paper titled ‘Towards an integrated approach of pedestrian behaviour and exposure’ authored by Eleonora Papadimitriou is now published in Accident Analysis & Prevention. An integrated methodology for the analysis of pedestrian behaviour and exposure is proposed. The paper builds on existing research on pedestrian exposure, namely the Routledge microscopic indicator, and uses integrated choice and latent variables (ICLV) models of pedestrian behaviour, taking into account road, traffic and human factors. The method is tested with data from a field survey in Athens, Greece, which used pedestrian behaviour observations as well as a questionnaire on human factors of pedestrian behaviour. The results suggest that both pedestrian behaviour and exposure are largely defined by a small number of factors: road type, traffic volume and pedestrian risk-taking. The probability for risk-taking behaviour and the related exposure decrease in less demanding road and traffic environments. A synthesis of the results reveals conditions of increased risk exposure: principal urban arterials (where risk-taking behaviour is low but the related exposure is very high) and minor arterials (where risk-taking behaviour is more frequent, and the related exposure is still high). A “paradox” of increased risk-taking behaviour of pedestrians with low exposure is found, suggesting that these pedestrians may compensate in moderate traffic conditions due to their increased walking speed.
A paper titled ‘Relating traffic fatalities to GDP in Europe on the long term‘ with emphassis to turbulent financial situations, co-authored by Costas Antoniou, George Yannis, Eleonora Papadimitriou and Sylvain Lassarre is now published in Accident Analysis & Prevention. For this analysis, time series of the number of fatalities and GDP in 30 European countries for a period of 38 years (1975–2012) were exploited. This process relies on estimating long-term models (as captured by long term time-series models, which model each country separately). Based on these developments, utilizing state-of-the-art modelling and analysis techniques such as the Common Correlated Effects Mean Group estimator (Pesaran), the long-term elasticity mean value equals 0.63, and is significantly different from zero for 10 countries only. When we take away the countries, where the number of fatalities is stationary, the average elasticity takes a higher value of nearly 1. This shows the strong sensitivity of the estimate of the average elasticity over a panel of European countries and underlines the necessity to be aware of the underlying nature of the time series, to get a suitable regression model.
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has just published the 30th PIN Flash Report ‘How safe are new cars sold in the EU?‘. In the last decade the long term road safety trend has been positive across the EU countries, and although the reduction in deaths may be a result of many factors, including better enforcement, changing behaviour and safer infrastructure, there is little doubt thatimproved vehicle safety standards since the late 1990’s have played an important role. One important indicator of the level of vehicle safety in Europe overall is what proportion of the number of tested vehicles actually sold meet Euro NCAP’s highest safety ratings. The last assessment of the progress of the Euro NCAP programme carried out by ETSC in 2009 found that there were very significant differences between the average Euro NCAP rating of new cars sold in Eastern and Central European countries, compared to their Western European counterparts.
The World Road Association (PIARC) has recently released a Report titled ‘Improving safety in road tunnels through real-time communication with users‘. This report is a continuation of the one published by PIARC in 2008 on ‘Human Factors and road tunnel safety regarding users‘. It describes human behavioural aspects when driving, andhow to communicate information to tunnel users in normal, congested and critical situations. It details the various systems that can be activated for real-time communication with users and reviews how these devices can be used in cases of congestion, a serious incident and fire and how the activation of these systems and devices must be adapted to the changing circumstances of the event.
Which are the effects of driver distraction and brain pathologies on reaction time and accident risk? – 2016
A paper titled “Which are the effects of driver distraction and brain pathologies on reaction time and accident risk?” authored by Dimosthenis Pavlou, Panagiotis Papantoniou, Eleonora Papadimitriou, Sophia Vardaki, George Yannis, Costas Antoniou, John Golias and Sokratis G. Papageorgiou is now published in Advances in Transportation Studies an international Journal. A driving simulator experiment with 140 participants (out of which 109 were patients) was carried out by an interdisciplinary research team of neurologists, neuropsychologists and transportation engineers. The brain pathologies examined include early Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and Mild Cognitive Impairment. A statistical analysis was carried out by means of mixed generalized linear modelling and the results indicated significant differences between the driving performance of healthy drivers and patients. Patients with cerebral diseases reacted significantly slower at unexpected incidents than the healthy ones and were more likely to be involved in an accident. The mobile phone use had a significant negative effect on both reaction time and accident probability.
The Road Safety Unit of DG Move of the European Commission published recently the 2015 Edition of the EU Road Safety Country Overviews with the active contribution of NTUA, KFV and ERF. The EU Road Safety Country Overviews are based on most recent disaggregate data for all EU countries from theCARE Database of the European Commission as well as on structured information gathered from the EU Member States.
These Road Safety Country Overviews consist of five analysis sections (Social costs, Number killed and injured, Safety performance indicators, Safety measures and programmes, Structure and culture) and one synthesis section providing a comprehensive picture of current road safety facts and challenges in each EU country.