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Four road safety insights from across the UK.

Clearview Traffic Group were back on the road again in October, delivering our annual programme of regional road shows at some amazing venues around the UK.

Starting off in Hampden Park, Glasgow on 9th October with by far our largest audience, we had a superb day including a fascinating tour of the National Stadium.

Then onto Manchester on 16th October, where we had the chance to visit the home of the current Premier League title holders Manchester City at their home stadium, and then on the final leg to London on 23rd October, with our last stop being at the London Transport Museum in Covent Garden.

The three events ran like clockwork and the organisation at each of the venues was superb, as was the level of interaction from the participants.

The audience at each of the events was very varied, with about 37% of the audience being from local authorities, 19% from consultants, 19% from road operators, and the remainder a mix of academics, researchers and competitors.

During the course of the road shows, we asked a number of questions via our electronic voting buttons – something that just adds a different slant to the day, and allows instant feedback on what other people in the room are thinking.

These provide some great insight on questions of road safety such as:

1. How well do you feel road markings are maintained?

  • Poor – 47%
  • Fair – 44%
  • Good – 9%
  • Excellent – 0%
    • This showed that our views largely mirror those presented in the Road Safety Markings Association LifeLines 2014 report, which states that 40%+ of all white lining across all roads types need replacing immediately, with 46% of Highways Agency roads requiring lining replacement

2. Which of these contributory factors of accidents do you think was reported most?

  • Injudicious action – 34%
    e.g. Speeding, not obeying road signs etc.
  • Poor driver reaction – 31%
    e.g. Sudden braking, loss of control or poor manoeuvre
  • Drivers vision affected – 15%
    e.g. road layout (bend, hill etc), poor weather
  • Road environment – 20%
    e.g. Inadequate road markings, road layout (bend, hill, narrows etc)
    • The reality here according to the latest DfT statistics is very different and whilst we automatically judge the driver to be at fault from speeding, 72% of accidents occur due to poor driver reaction and only 23% of accidents were attributed to injudicious action

3. Where do you think most accidents involving cyclists occur?

  • Rural roads – 4%
  • Built up roads – 16%
  • On or near junctions – 80%
  • Off road cycle tracks / paths – 0%
    • Good to see that the audience were well aware of the risk to cyclists at or near junctions, which is where 75% of cycling serious accidents occur, with 30% involve a turning vehicle and HGVs involved in 25% of cyclist fatalities

4. What is the current priority for traffic / highways planners?

  • Reducing congestion – 41%
  • Cost containment – 8%
  • Improving road safety – 28%
  • Minimising environmental impact – 8%
  • Enhancing journey predictability – 15%
    • Despite the recent upturn in Killed & Seriously Injured statistics, it is perhaps concerning that reducing congestion seems to be the number one priority; but when you delve a little further, 64% of participants said that poor road layout was the number one cause of congestion. With any plans to address road layout, clearly part of the consideration will be to address and improve road safety.

These are just some of the insights we gathered from the road safety events.

The feedback from participants across the dates was excellent, with the overall tone being that the presentations were very thought provoking, with good use of statistics to affirm application and use of solutions to tackle highways issues, and good content behind all the recommendations made for future transport infrastructure models.

So how do we top it? What will we do next year? Would you like us to come and present near you or at your offices? What topics would you like to hear us talk about?

Please feel free to get in touch with us hereto discuss queries concerning road safety and road safety solutions.

Author: |Date Published: November 2014

Links: Route Safety Network Management

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