Earlier in 2022 a group of over 50 road safety professionals from the UK and overseas took part in two roundtable events that considered the role of road Safety Performance Indicators (SPI). These events, supported by the Department for Transports and commissioned by Road Safety GB, took into account existing evidence from Europe, as well as frameworks introduced here in the UK by Transport Scotland and National Highways. Attendees included representatives of local authorities already engaged in developing new, “Vision Zero” partnerships, as well as experts, academics, and NGOs in our sector.
The full report has now been published via the Road Safety Knowledge Centre and includes a series of key recommendations which will be discussed at a special webinar hosted by Agilysis on 7th June, 2022 at 2pm BST.
The recommendations are, of course, framed around Safe System interventions and provide a clear path to producing a reliable and comparable set of measures with which they can measure progress and performance. They include concise suggestions such as the improvement of Star Ratings coverage on the road networks; identifying criteria for assessing what ‘safe speeds’ are on the road network and how these can be monitored effectively; and calls for more efforts to assess vehicle safety levels and post-collision response dynamics.
Road Safety GB has specifically committed to taking forward the recommendation on a “standard set of questions that can be used in local road user surveys to monitor safe road use SPIs around alcohol and drug use, handheld device use and seatbelt belt use.” It is hoped that the roundtable events assist relevant stakeholders to not only adopt these supporting mechanisms, but to be a part of wider efforts to deploy SPIs coherently across the Safe System.
Throughout the event it was clear that, although the collection of SPIs was essential, it should not pose a burden on individual authorities. Some indicators can be collected nationally and subsequently analysed at the local level. (such as speed compliance using vehicle GPS data), but others relating to local road and road user are best handled locally. Standardising these indicators and allowing local authorities to select those most relevant to them is another key recommendation.
The events were supported not only by those with expertise in our sector, but also by technology providers who can unlock the data and tools to assess SPI on local roads. The event featured presentations from leading companies such as TomTom, Gaist, Vivacity and TRL; all of whom are already working to better understand risk on our roads.
All attendees provided positive feedback about the event which will hopefully provide assistance and guidance for the creation of a future national framework, possibly covering all nations of the United Kingdom.
You can read the full report here