Road Safety News
Road Safety News concern a selection of the most recent developments on road safety in Greece, in Europe and worldwide.
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is observed on the third Sunday of November each year (this year on 19 November 2017) 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 will take place in Greece:
A recent United Nations‘ Press Release highlighted the fact that 650 people are killed each day in road accidents throughout Africa. “There is projected increase in urbanization, motorization, infrastructure development projects and vehicle ownership in the region over the coming decades. Road traffic fatalities and injuries will continue to take a rising toll on countries if no significant changes are made” warned the Special Envoy for Road Safety, Jean Todt, addressing the 2017 Africa Road Safety Conference in Cape Town, South Africa. To change this trend, Mr. Todt urged participating governments to implement the Global Plan for the Decade of Action and the African Road Safety Action Plan, which focuses on safer roads, vehicles and road users. It also details improved post-crash care and stronger road safety governance, including the enforcement of strong legislation. He also called for implementing basic laws not obeyed in some countries, such as using seat belts and helmets, child safety seats, and prohibiting drunk drivers.
The Hellenic Institute of Transportation Engineers (HITE), has released its position towards the improvement of road safety in Greece with an elaborate problem analysis and a comprehensive set of prioritised measures. In addition, HITE has released its position on the changes of the Road Traffic Code proposed by the Government. Even though some proposed provisions are considered very useful (cycle and HGV traffic rules, fines rationalisation, etc.) the intention to decrease speeding fines and to increase motorways speed limits are blatant failures highlighted by the HITE.
The 25th Meeting of the International Traffic Safety Data and Analysis Group (IRTAD) organised by the International Transport Forum (ITF) took place in Marrakesh, on 13 October 2017
NTUA presentations concerned:
A special issue of Safety Science on Naturalistic Driving Research is now calling for papers with NTUA Professor George Yannis as Guest Editor. Manuscripts submitted to this Special Issue will enable information dissemination on the latest methodologies and findings from naturalistic driving research worldwide. Topic Areas may include, but are not limited to: Crash risk and crash causation, Distraction and inattention, Interaction with cyclists and pedestrians, Vehicle automation and connectivity, Eco-driving, Typical everyday driving behaviour, Novice drivers, Elderly Drivers, Naturalistic Cycling, Naturalistic Riding (Powered two-wheelers), Methodology and definitions.
Deadline for Submission of full paper online: December 31, 2017
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.”
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.
VIAS Institute is the organisation that is taking over the role of Belgian Road Safety Institute (BRSI) after 30 years. The change of name is the final part of a process that was put in motion six years ago. Over the years, BRSI has built up a strong reputation in the area of road and traffic safety. BRSI have done so – based on research – by targeting the way in which they work on the changes to people’s behaviour out on the road. Improving road safety, along with mobility and safety in general: that is the aim of VIAS Institute, as a major Belgian Knowledge center.
The Vehicle and Traffic Safety Centre at Chalmers (SAFER) has recently launched its new website, aiming to further communicate worldwide SAFER research findings and presenting all projects, publications, news, seminars and other activities. SAFER is the open innovation arena with the contribution of Volvo, VTI, Chalmers University and other partners, where researchers and expertise work together to create safe mobility. Its traffic safety approach covers people, vehicles and the infrastructure – and together they contribute to safer road transports and smarter, more sustainable cities.
The Institute of Communication & Computer Systems and the Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure & Transport are organising a workshop and demonstration of I_HeERO – “Infrastructure Harmonised eCall European Pilot” implementation in Greece, that will be held on Tuesday, 24 October 2017 at the Hellenic Ministry of Infrastructure and Transport facilities, in Athens, Greece. The European project I_HeERO: Deployment pilot project of EU-wide eCall is aimed at the preparation of Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) in the participant Member States (Bulgaria, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Finland, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Portugal, Romania and Slovenia) for the deployment of eCall based on 112 as reference implementations. The event is expected to attract a wide variety of participants from private and public institutions, local authorities, academic and research communities, manufacturers, road transport professionals and end users associations.
The World Road Association-PIARC recently published a Report entitled: “Advanced technology for data collection and information to users and operators”. The Report provides brief summaries of projects from around the world, presented in the form of use cases that are representative of innovative ways of collecting, distributing, and making use of mobile data to assist transportation officials in their winter maintenance operations and to provide information to the travelling public. The use cases or case studies were selected because it is the belief of the authors that, when deployed, any of the technologies described will have a positive impact on transportation safety, mobility, the environment, and/or more efficient use of human and material resources needed to carry out their winter maintenance duties.
The Newsletter of the African-European Dialogue Platform on Road Safety (SaferAfrica) has been recently issued with the active contribution of NTUA. This Newsletter is the official, semi-annual newsletter of the SaferAfrica Project funded within Horizon 2020 programme of the European Commission, aiming to create favourable conditions and opportunities for the effective implementation of actions for road safety and traffic management in African countries by setting up a Dialogue Platform between Africa and Europe. The first issue includes a) New Network of Regional Road Safety Observatories by World Bank, OECD and FIA, b) Towards the Pan-African Road Safety Knowledge and Data Centre, c) Data-driven road safety under construction in Cameroon.
The renown international scientific journal Advances in Transportation Studies (ATS) has launched its new website. The new ATS website has been redesigned for a user friendly and appealing web navigation offering to the Scientific Community a quick access to all scientific results published.
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, waited since long. 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 a road safety technical package entitled: Save LIVES, 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.