Vision Zero: road safety newsletter from Brake about global research and initiatives in road safety and sustainable transport.
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Global initiatives

Two high-level health documents in support of liveable cities

Two high-level documents in support of safe, green and clean city transport have emerged from the World Health Organisation 9th global conference on health promotion in Shanghai.

The Shanghai Declaration on promoting health in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development places responsibility for health with governments and businesses and calls on them to “prioritise policies that create co-benefits between health and well-being and other city policies” stating that “profit must not stand above people’s health” particularly when “fighting the NCD [non-communicable disease] epidemic”.

The Shanghai Consensus on Healthy Cities 2016, signed by 100 mayors, commits to eliminate air pollution and, under priority no.8, “design cities to promote sustainable urban mobility, walking and physical activity through attractive and green neighborhoods, active transport infrastructure, strong road safety laws, and accessible play and leisure facilities.”

Mayor summit moves on banning diesel, while Marrakech moved on increasing electric

Diesel vehicles should be banned in four major cities by 2025, under commitments by the mayors of Paris, Madrid, Mexico City and Athens at the C40 Mayors Summit 2016 in Mexico.

The Government Fleet Declaration at Cop22 in Marrakech last month lists national commitments to swap to electric fleets.

Global sustainable transport conference produces Ashgabat Statement

The UN-convened inaugural Global Conference on Sustainable Transport has produced the Ashgabat Statement, stating: “For transport systems to fully fulfill their multiple functions in advancing sustainable development, all stakeholders need to ensure the availability of safe, universally accessible, reliable, secure, affordable, fuel-efficient, environmentally friendly, low-carbon, and climate-resilient transport.”

United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs Wu Hongbo said in his closing speech: “Simply put, without sustainable transport, there will be no lasting progress on climate action nor the Sustainable Development Goals.’’


Action: worldwide vehicle standards

The World Forum for the Harmonisation of Vehicle Regulations, hosted by the United Nations, is consulting with the automotive industry for an industry-wide voluntary commitment for minimum vehicle safety standards, in light of current large differences and lack of safety standards in some nations. The announcement has been supported by Global NCAP which demonstrated one significant difference in a car-to-car crash test last month.

Action: manufacturer responds to zero star test result

After a zero star Global NCAP test result for adult occupant protection in its Zest model, vehicle manufacturer Tata made structural improvements and, combined with airbags and other features, was able to achieve a four star rating, demonstrating the capability of manufacturers to make rapid safety improvements.


Research: serious injuries

The European Commission Study on Serious Road Traffic Injuries in the EU examined crash and injury characteristics and makes preventative recommendations including segregation of cyclists and pedestrians from vehicles and 20mph/30km/h speed limits. The study looked at injuries that were classed as three or above on the Maximum Injuries Abbreviated Scale (MAIS), using data from nine European countries sourced from in-depth studies, police and hospitals.

Research: cyclist fear and behaviour

A survey of more than 11,000 cyclists in the UK by Cycling UK found more than half use pavements to avoid “traffic danger” where there is not a separate cycle path.

Road safety enforcement and criminal justice

Research: Phone enforcement

UK police officers are not yet able to investigate fully the role of phone use in all injury crashes, finds research by University of the West of England. Dr Paul Pilkington, who surveyed police officers, calls for technological solutions such as ‘textalysers’ that enable phone analysis at the roadside.  Dr Pilkington also led research earlier this year indicating deficiencies in reporting phone involvement across a range of countries including China and the USA.

Action: Phone enforcement

UK police officers are using unmarked vans, helmet-mounted cameras, high-seated vehicles and high vantage points to catch drivers on phones. The techniques were used in the second national week of action against phone use in 2016.

Research: Driving age

Lowering the age at which young people can drive from 18 to 17 in the state of Victoria would “increase safety risks for a potentially negligible amount of economic benefit for young people”, finds research by Monash University’s Institute of Transport Studies.  


Research: emergency care study started

A three-year project called Revive evaluating and sharing best practice post-collision emergency care across Europe has been started by the European Transport Safety Council.

Research: life-long impacts of injury

Almost 80% of people seriously injured never fully recover, nearly two-thirds suffer post-traumatic stress disorder, and loss of income is another consequence, finds the European study MyLAC (My Life After The Crash). MyLAC surveyed victims in 20 European countries and was carried out by the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims and the Belgian Road Safety Institute.

Awareness raising

Road safety: global killer is a half-hour documentary from the United Nations on the global epidemic of road crashes, featuring first-person stories of road crash victims.

World’s worst traffic? Jakarta is an article by UK newspaper The Guardian covering renewed efforts to tackle Jakarta’s infamous traffic congestion through Mass Rapid Transit and Bus Rapid Transit systems.
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