Road Safety News
Road Safety News concern a selection of the most recent developments on road safety in Greece, in Europe and worldwide.
Advances in Transportation Studies – an international journal launched its new website. The website has been redesigned for a user friendly and appealing web navigation. In addition to the updated design and layout of the pages, new functions have been implemented in this website version.
The Australia and New Zealand Driverless Vehicle Initiative (ADVI), led by the Australian Road Research Board (ARRB), released the Preliminary findings from the first Australian National Survey of Public Opinion about Automated and Driverless Vehicles. In late 2016, a sub-set of members of ADVI’s Scientific Research Group designed and conducted a public opinion survey to gauge Australian public awareness, understanding and likely acceptance of automated vehicles, with the primary focus on cars. Responses from 5263 participants were collected and analysed in relation to their level of awareness of automated vehicles generally, and their opinions specifically about partly- and fully-automated cars: perceived risks associated with them, their willingness to pay for them, perceived potential benefits, trust in them, perceived concerns and likely acceptance.
The Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering of the Civil Engineering School of the National Technical University of Athens was ranked 9th in Europe and 39th worldwide among all Transportation Science & Technology Schools and the Civil Engineering School of the National Technical University of Athens was ranked 7th worldwide (3rd European) among all Civil Engineering Schools according to ShanghaiRanking’s Global Ranking of Academic Subjects (GRAS) 2017 . The methodology of the ShanghaiRanking’s Global Ranking include specific thresholds, indicators and weights.
The Council of the European Union set a new target of halving the number of serious injuries on roads in the EU by 2030 from the 2020 baseline, using a recently agreed common definition. Of particular concern is the number of pedestrians and cyclists killed or seriously injured each year. Council conclusions on road safety endorse the Valletta declaration on improving road safety adopted at an informal ministerial meeting organised by the presidency on 29 March 2017. They will feed into the next EU strategy on road safety, which is expected to be developed for the decade 2020-2030.
A coalition of industry, NGOs, consumer groups and cities are calling on the European Commission to urgently bring forward new minimum safety standards for new cars, vans and trucks, after years of delays. The European Association of Automotive Suppliers (CLEPA), the European Cyclists Federation (ECF), POLIS, the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) and Transport & Environment (T&E) released a letter suggesting that new minimum vehicle safety standards are ‘absolutely critical’ to reducing deaths and serious injuries on European roads.
World Health Organisation (WHO) released a document entitled: Save LIVES: a road safety technical package, which is an evidence-based inventory of priority interventions with a focus on Speed management, Leadership, Infrastructure design and improvement, Vehicle safety standards, Enforcement of traffic laws and post-crash Survival. The 6 strategies and 22 interventions recommended in the package are interrelated and should be implemented in an integrated manner to effectively address road traffic deaths and injuries.
The Road Safety Institute ‘Panos Mylonas’ with the support of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) produced and implemented a video campaign titled “a while ago…” within the Fourth UN Global Road Safety Week, focusing on speed, identified worldwide as a major risk factor of death and disability.
With 3500 people killed every day in traffic crashes the Manifesto #4RoadSafety issued by the Global Network for Road Safety Legislators highlights the measures that can help prevent this tragic waste of human life on the world’s roads. The Manifesto #4RoadSafety includes ten key recommendations to encourage parliamentarians to support the current United Nation’s Decade of Action for Road Safety (2011-2020), with focus on speed management, the safe system approach, occupational road safety, good governance and funding for road injury prevention, the role of the multilateral development banks and proposes a new UN target for road safety in 2030.
SafetyCube is a research project funded by the European Commission under Horizon 2020, the EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, in the domain of Road Safety. The project started on May 1st, 2015 and runs for a period of three years with primary objective to develop an innovative road safety Decision Support System (DSS) that will enable policy-makers and stakeholders to select and implement the most appropriate strategies, measures and cost-effective approaches to reduce casualties of all road user types and all severities in Europe and worldwide. NTUA is actively contributing to all phases of the SafetyCube project.
The latest SafetyCube newsletter is now available, including very useful Practical Guidelines for determining the number of serious road injuries.
On March 23rd, during its 74th session, UN World Road Safety Forum discussed an Informal Document on automated driving. This document, submitted by the Chair of WP.1 Informal Working Group of Experts on Automated Driving (IWG-AD), provides a draft common understanding of the Vienna and Geneva conventions with regard to the use of automated driving functions.
NTUA is inviting experienced researchers from EU countries established outside Greece, who would like to pursue a PostDoc research programme at the NTUA Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering, to apply for European or Global Fellowships of the Marie Curie Individual Fellowships Programme of the European Commission (deadline: September 14th, 2017).
The NTUA Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering is a world class centre on transport research excellence, offering high level research opportunities in state-of-the-art transport science disciplines, within a highly skilled and warm research team. Detailed requirements for application are available at the Marie Curie Programme website and for further information you can contact us.
The International Road Transport Union (IRU) has recently launched the Guidelines on Safer Goods Reception, with aim to promote and ensure a safe and efficient working environment and use of the loading/unloading site for all stakeholders at the reception of goods. These IRU Guidelines provide information, rules and recommendations for different goods reception areas, taking into consideration safety, environment and cost effectiveness measures, enabling users to select the best solution based on its specific requirements. The Guidelines include general information on goods reception areas intended to facilitate the safe loading and unloading of goods and aim to contribute to an efficient and safe working environment for all new and existing reception areas.
The UN Road Safety Collaboration is organising the global campaign for the Fourth UN Global Road Safety Week, 8-14 May 2017. The Week will focus on speed and what can be done to address this key risk factor for road traffic deaths and injuries. Speed contributes to around one-third of all fatal road traffic crashes in high-income countries, and up to half in low- and middle-income countries. The Global Road Safety Week seeks to increase understanding of the dangers of speed and generate action on measures to address speed, thereby saving lives on the roads. Several events are also organised in Greece:
- NTUA – The Future of Road Safety Research Workshop, Athens
- IOAS – Road Safety Educational & Awareness Activities, Athens
- EFTHITA – Several Road Safety Events, Rhodes
- SOSTE – Slow Down, Several Greek Cities
- Making streets liveable, Road Safety Information Activities, Megara
The European Traffic Police Network (TISPOL) together with the European Commission DG Move Road Safety Unit have launched the project EDWARD – the European Day Without A Road Death 2017. After just one year, Project Edward has earned its place on Europe’s road safety calendar. The 2017 European Day without a Road Death will take place on Thursday 21 September. Several events, initiatives and promotional activity right across Europe will take place. Moreover, there will be a brand new dedicated Project EDWARD website with lots of new resources, artwork you can download – including images and infographics, a social media schedule so you will know what we’re going to be doing and can align yourself with various messages in the build-up to the day and on the day itself, a countdown timer to the day itself (starting 11 June, 100 days before 21 September), an interactive map and a brand new pledge to sign.
The Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP) has launched a new series of Positioning Papers, designed to create an understanding of the scale of road traffic deaths and injuries and their linkages to other humanitarian and development issues. The Positioning Papers seek to highlight that road safety is a multidimensional issue that requires an urgent and sustained contribution across many sectors, and that evidence based road safety interventions can address broader development issues such as children’s rights, public health, consumer rights and more. The Positioning Papers further enhance the GRSP’s suite of tools to support road safety advocacy campaign planning, including a general advocacy campaign toolkit and media advocacy toolkit, all of which are available on its Advocacy Tools web page.
The Civil Engineering School of the National Technical University of Athens was ranked this year 12th in Europe and 42rd worldwide among all Civil Engineering Schools. This ranking is produced by the QS Organisation (QS World University Rankings by Subject 2017) based on the following criteria: Research, Teaching, Employability, Facilities, Internationalization, Innovation, Engagement and Access. NTUA road safety activities have contributed to this ranking.
Professor Demetris Koutsoyiannis, Dean of the Civil Engineering School highlighted that the Civil Engineering School improved its ratings, compared to 2016, in all individual criteria of the ranking, except for one: the reputation of its graduates, in which there was a slight decline (from 80 to 74.9). The Civil Engineering School scored its best individual ranking in the “citations per paper” criterion (91.1), in which it was ranked 19th worldwide. In this specific criterion it overpasses a lot of competitive schools which have a better overall ranking.
The Independent Council for Road Safety International (ICoRSI) is a recently launched new not-for profit organization, which provides independent authoritative advice on global road safety policies by road safety scientists that have no financial conflicts of interest. ICoRSI aims to provide rapid, independent and evidence-based information on road safety policy and practice to policy makers and the public, strengthen the capacity of safety professionals and policy makers to understand existing evidence and undertake new research and facilitate in capacity building for safety professionals and policy makers in the field of transportation safety.
ICoRSI has recently launched comments on WHO’s draft global targets for road safety risk factors.
- TRAVisions 2018 Young Researcher Competition, an academic student competition with the goal of stimulating the interest among young researchers and students in the field of sustainable surface transport
- TRAVisions 2018 Senior Researcher Competition , a competition for senior researchers in the field of innovative surface transport concepts based on results only from EU-funded projects .
The deadline for the submission of abstracts for the Young Researcher Competition is 30/06/2017 23:59 CET.
The infographic of the 2016 NTUA Road Safety Observatory (www.nrso.ntua.gr) highlights one more very intensive year, striving with highly scientific expertise to improve road safety in Greece, in Europe and worldwide.
The nrso people with excellent dedication, efficiency and expertise were active in 13 innovative research projects, succeeded to publish more than 55 scientific papers (21 in peer reviewed journals), achieved more than 38.500 visits of the nrso website, handled more than 75.000 emails and run more than 4.500 km!
At the end of another year full of surprises and non-stopping efforts, we heartily wish you very joyful Christmas holidays and a very happy and fruitful new year 2017, plenty of personal and professional achievements. Let’s face the new challenges ahead with creative hope and scientific persistence for even safer roads in Europe and worldwide.
The recently established Road Infrastructure Safety Directorate (P.D.109/2014) of the Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure, Transport and Networks has further adapted Greek legislation to the provisions of Directive 2008/96/EC on Road Infrastructure Safety Management by introducing the certification procedures for Road Safety Auditors in Greece (OG 1694/13.6.2016) .
This new legislation concerns the establishment and implementation of procedures for road safety audits and inspections, the assessment of road safety impacts and the management and improvement of the Greek national road network safety level, at the design, construction and operational stages. According to these new procedures, Road Safety Audits will be performed by Certified Auditors who should have completed a Certified Road Safety Training Program and obtained the certificate of competence. NTUA has actively contributed to the development of these procedures and the related scientific supporting material.
Dr. Panagiotis Papantoniou obtained the NTUA Thomaidion Αward 2016 for the publication of the journal paper titled “Assessment of driving simulator studies on driver distraction”, co-authored by Prof. George Yannis and Dr. Eleonora Papadimitriou in the Advances in Transportation Studies.
Dr. Dimosthenis Pavlou obtained the NTUA Thomaidion Αward 2016 for the publication of the conference paper titled “Driving behaviour of drivers with Mild Cognitive Impairment and Alzheimer’s Disease: a driving simulator study”, co-authored by Dr. Eleonora Papadimitriou, Dr. Costas Antoniou, Dr. Panagiotis Papantoniou, Prof. George Yannis, Prof. John Golias, and Dr. Sokratis Papageorgiou, in the Proceedings of the 94th Annual meeting of the Transportation Research Board, Washington, January 2015.
According to a recent University Ranking, based on the number of references in scientific journals over the last decade (2007-2016) in the field of transportation, NTUA ranks 3rd in Europe and 19th worldwide (h-index: 26). The Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering of the School of Civil Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens has contributed largely to this excellent performance and road safety was one of the main components.
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is observed on the third Sunday of November each year (this year on 20 November 2016) by an increasing number of countries on every continent around the world. From 1995, the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims (FEVR) observed this day, as European Day of Remembrance, that was adopted by the United Nations in 2005, and is dedicated to remembering the many millions killed or injured in road crashes and their families and communities, as well as to pay tribute to the dedicated emergency crews, police and medical professionals who daily deal with the traumatic aftermath of road death and injury.
Several activities took place worldwide, including those of:
- the European Commission support and special statements by Commissioners Bulc and Andriukaitis
- the World Health Organization (WHO) supported this World Day of remembrance and produced a booklet on Post-crash response: supporting those affected by road crashes
- the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) on the occasion of this World Day of Remembrance launched the new REVIVE initiative focusing on post-collision care
Several activities took also place in Greece:
- EFTHITA Rhodes organised a seminar on parents driver behaviour and was also received by the President of the Republic who expressed all his support
- SOS Traffic Crimes organised traffic safety promotion events in central places in Athens, Kalamata, Katerini and Alexandroupolis
- Road Safety Institute “Panos Mylonas” organised prevention and educational road safety actions in cooperation with Technological Educational Institution (TEI) of Athens and other Greek Institutions
The New Urban Agenda is a twenty year global policy framework for cities. It has been adopted at the United Nations Habitat III conference, held in Quito, Ecuador. The #SaveKidsLives campaign, contributed towards ensuring road safety goals were included in the Global Goals. Now, with over 1 million supporters, the #SaveKidsLives campaign marks a significant achievement; the New Urban Agenda includes the core objective of a ‘safe and healthy journey to school for every child’ as a priority.
Safer City Streets, the new global traffic safety network for liveable cities, was launched on 18 October during the UN Habitat III conference in Quito, Ecuador. Safer City Streets is managed by the International Transport Forum and it is built for cities to share their experience and learn from each other. Cities address many challenges by working together and learning from each other – but so far not in road safety. Safer City Streets fills this gap by linking cities that are working to make their citizens safer in traffic. It provides city officials high-value information for better decision making, global networking and learning opportunities for city officials and the possibility to carry out research on topics of common interest. Member cities have access to policy-relevant data, a network of experts and targeted analysis.
NTUA has actively contributed to the Methodology for Developing the Database and Network.
EuroNCAP announced it’s latest safety ratings, sorted by the date of publication, by star rating and by make in alphabetical order. In 2016, the star rating is based on a vehicle fitted only with safety equipment which is standard across the entire model range, throughout EU28. All cars assessed now have a rating with standard safety equipment only. A second rating might also be available for the same vehicle model which represents the additional safety available from a ‘safety pack’, containing all of the safety technologies needed to achieve the additional star rating and must be available on all variants in all countries where the additional equipment is not standard. The EuroNCAP’s latest safety ratings are now available:
A new Report “Investing to prevent road trauma saves lives and pays financial dividends” launched by FIA Foundation on 22nd September 2016 during the iRAP Innovation Workshop hosted by the World Bank in Washington DC, presenting findings to representatives of development banks, philanthropies and road authorities. The new report builds on the last year’s Report: Breaking the Deadlock: A Social Impact Investment Lens on Reducing Costs of Road Trauma and Unlocking Capital for Road Safety and is part of the FIA Foundation’s ‘Financing for Development’ series of policy and research papers.
The European Traffic Police Network (TISPOL) together with the European Commission DG Move Road Safety Unit have launched the project EDWARD – the European Day Without A Road Death 2016, which took place with great success on 21 September 2016. This day there were 43 road deaths across 31 countries, compared to 70 fatalities on the same day in 2015 (reduction of almost 39%) with 19 countries recording zero fatalities on 21 September, compared with 11 countries in 2015. A full country-by-country result report is now available:
Project EDWARD also featured a road safety pledge asking road users to promise to: drive at speeds that are both legal and safe, pay particular attention when driving near schools, never drive after drinking alcohol or taking drugs/medicines, always wear seat belt and not using mobile phone while driving.