Measuring the Influence of the Road and Roadside in the Safe System
Measuring the Influence of the Road and Roadside in the Safe System Karen Stephan & Stuart Newstead Monash University Accident Research Centre The Australian Road Safety Strategy (2011-2020) recognises safe roads and safe speeds to be the two cornerstones of the Safe System approach with the greatest potential to reduce casualties. Aims of the strategy include assessing risk on the road network in order to target high risk sections and locations, and setting speed limits according to the risk and function of the road and roadside environment. Central to achieving these aims is the measurement of the influence of the road and road environment on crash risk. Previous research has been conducted, both in Australia and overseas, however it has focused mainly on relatively simple road environments (e.g. highways and rural roads) while urban environments have been somewhat neglected. This is likely due to the difficulty in obtaining the data to fully characterise such complex environments. To achieve the aims of the strategy, a more systematic approach is needed to develop risk assessment models for all roads in the road network. The first step is collecting the necessary data. This paper will discuss the data requirements necessary for developing risk assessment models of the relationship between the design of the road and road environment and crash risk for any type of road. Other uses for such data will also be considered, e.g. asset management and other public health and safety-related research and reporting.