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EP elections 2019: Where do the main political groups stand on road safety?

EP elections 2019: Where do the main political groups stand on road safety?

Most of the main political groups fielding candidates in the upcoming European Parliamentary elections support an expanded role for the EU in road safety issues over the next five years, according to a survey by ETSC.  However, there are differences between the groups as to what extent European as opposed to national action is the preferred approach. MEPs were surveyed on priorities for the new mandate published in ETSC’s own election briefing. All of the groups that replied were supportive of the introduction of […]

Video on “emergency corridors” reaches 500,000 on Facebook

Video on “emergency corridors” reaches 500,000 on Facebook

A short animated film by ETSC explaining the “emergency corridor” system used by several European countries has been shared by thousands of people and seen by around half a million users on the Facebook social media platform. The emergency corridor system, which enables emergency vehicles to reach collision sites faster, requires vehicles to separate in a systematic, organised way during periods of traffic congestion, in order to make a clear path wide enough for a fire engine to pass.  The measure is in place […]

New connected vehicle rules could boost road safety

New connected vehicle rules could boost road safety

The European Commission has agreed on the first wave of requirements for electronic communications both between road infrastructure and vehicles, as well as between vehicles.  ETSC has warmly welcomed the inclusion of safety-enhancing features in the list of priority services for so-called Cooperative Intelligent Transport Systems (C-ITS) set out in the legal text, notably the ‘dynamic speed limit information’ service. This technology will enable, for example, variable speed limit information signs to communicate directly to compatible vehicles.  This could further enhance the accuracy of […]

Help for authorities and private sector to access EU road safety funding and loans

Help for authorities and private sector to access EU road safety funding and loans

The European Commission and the European Investment Bank have launched a new initiative to help public authorities and the private sector access funding and loans for road safety. The “Safer Transport Platform – Road Safety Advisory” provides a single access point to the full range of existing EIB and EC advisory services and financial products. It guides potential applicants to the appropriate funding and financing instruments. The service is supported by the European Investment Advisory Hub (EIAH) and includes a web site with a contact form, […]

OECD city report recommends shift to cycling in urban areas to improve road safety

OECD city report recommends shift to cycling in urban areas to improve road safety

Modal shift away from private motor vehicles could significantly improve road safety in dense urban areas, according to a new report on urban road safety by the International Transport Forum of the OECD.  Such a shift would also bring public health benefits associated with increased physical activity and improved air quality, according to the authors. The report benchmarked road safety performance in 72 urban areas, mostly in Europe, and illustrates governance solutions to improve urban road safety with case studies conducted in Lisbon (Portugal) […]

European Parliament backs new vehicle safety standards

European Parliament backs new vehicle safety standards

The European Parliament has given the green light to new minimum EU vehicle safety requirements that will come into force from 2022.  The vote by the full parliament, at its last session of this mandate, follows a provisional deal reached by the EU institutions last month. According to the final deal on the legislation, new cars, vans, lorries and buses sold in Europe will be fitted as standard with a range of new vehicle safety features such as Automated Emergency Braking which can detect […]

Seatbelt reminders in every seating position from September

Seatbelt reminders in every seating position from September

The EU has formally agreed updated UNECE regulations on seatbelts that will require seatbelt reminder systems in all front and rear seats on new cars from September 2019. Existing EU vehicle safety rules agreed in 2009 only require seatbelt reminder systems on the driver’s seat.  The updated requirements also include the front and rear passenger seats. In the front seats, the systems will need to be able to detect a passenger sitting and make an audible warning at the start of the journey if the belt is not […]

Coordinated speed checks reach 26 countries

Coordinated speed checks reach 26 countries

Police officers across Europe ran a week of coordinated actions to reduce speeding earlier this month including a 24-hour ‘Speed Marathon’. Figures from last year’s action showed that of 3,244,397 vehicles checked during the 24-hour operation, 92 per cent were driving within the legal speed limit. However, 257,639 speeding offences were detected, either by police officers or by technical means. The ‘Speed Marathon’ concept was devised six years ago in Germany. The concept, which involves inviting members of the public to identify locations where […]

Speed camera vandalism in France puts up to 75% of devices out of action

Speed camera vandalism in France puts up to 75% of devices out of action

The French government has announced the installation of 400 new-generation speed cameras, following a spate of attacks on existing devices in recent months. The interior minister Christophe Castaner announced last month that up to 75% of speed cameras across the country had been vandalised and put out of action.  Attacks on speed camera equipment in France have increased dramatically since the reduction of the rural road speed limit to 80km/h last summer and the rise of the Yellow Vest protest movement. The new French-made […]

ETSC comments on publication of 2018 EU road death figures

ETSC comments on publication of 2018 EU road death figures

The European Commission has published the 2018 figures for road deaths and serious injuries in the European Union. Commenting on the new figures, Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) said: “It’s very disappointing that road deaths in the EU hardly declined in 2018.  This is now the fifth year in a row that hardly any progress has been made.  However there are reasons to be optimistic for the future. “In recent weeks, the EU has finalised two important pieces […]

ETSC welcomes provisional deal on new vehicle safety standards

ETSC welcomes provisional deal on new vehicle safety standards

New cars, vans, lorries and buses sold in Europe will be fitted as standard with a range of new vehicle safety features, starting in 2022, according to a provisional EU deal on the legislation reached last night in Strasbourg. The new rules include requirements for new technologies, such as Automated Emergency Braking which can detect pedestrians and cyclists, as well as overridable Intelligent Speed Assistance, to be fitted as standard for the first time.  New lorries will be required to have improved levels of […]

Updated Euro NCAP tests reveal advances in traffic sign recognition technology

Updated Euro NCAP tests reveal advances in traffic sign recognition technology

Euro NCAP data from 2018 show that camera-based traffic sign recognition systems have advanced and were fitted as standard equipment to nearly all new vehicle models tested in 2018. Most of these systems are now able to function under conditional circumstances such as when a lower limit applies in rainy conditions e.g. on French motorways. Reports of Euro NCAP’s tests carried out in 2018 show results on Speed Limit Information Functions as part of Speed Assist Systems which also include manual speed limiters, Intelligent […]

Longer, safer lorry cabs permitted two years earlier

Longer, safer lorry cabs permitted two years earlier

Lorries with potentially safer and more aerodynamic cabs could be on European roads as early as next year, following an EU agreement to bring forward new rules on the maximum dimensions of heavy goods vehicles. Flat-fronted lorries have been the norm in Europe for decades due to the way in which the length of vehicles was regulated.  The combined overall length of the cab and trailer was restricted by law, leading to most space being used for cargo and the shortest possible length used […]

Autobahn speed limit “would save 140 lives”

Autobahn speed limit “would save 140 lives”

Data analysis by Der Spiegel, a German news magazine and website, has concluded that a speed limit applied across all German motorways would save 140 lives a year. The autobahn debate was sparked again in Germany last month after a 130 km/h motorway speed limit was one of a number of measures recommended by a Government commission looking at how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the transport sector. The transport minister Andreas Scheuer immediately ruled out such a measure, calling it an “unrealistic […]

European Transport Safety Council welcomes deal on safer EU road rules

European Transport Safety Council welcomes deal on safer EU road rules

Minimum road infrastructure safety standards will be extended to national roads across the EU in a significant boost for road safety, following a provisional deal on new legislation agreed today. Existing EU rules require governments to carry out regular road safety audits, identify high-risk sites and prioritise safety when building new roads but the legislation currently applies only to major European roads known collectively as the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T). A revised version of the rules agreed today would extend these measures to all […]

MEPs back life-saving vehicle safety standards in key vote

MEPs back life-saving vehicle safety standards in key vote

A key committee of MEPs has given the green light for a range of new mandatory vehicle safety standards that could apply to new vehicle models within three years. The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) welcomes the result of the vote but warns that time is running out for a final deal on the legislation before European Parliamentary elections in May. Members of the European Parliament’s Committee on Internal Market and Consumer Protection (IMCO) voted today to approve a range of new vehicle safety […]

In-vehicle technology vital to tackling speeding in Europe

In-vehicle technology vital to tackling speeding in Europe

Speeding remains a significant problem in many European countries according to new research published today by the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) ahead of an important vote in the European Parliament on Thursday on future mandatory in-vehicle safety technologies. The researchers looked at the numbers of vehicles found to be driving above the speed limit on different road types in the countries that were able to provide such data. On urban roads, where 37% of all EU road deaths occur, the researchers found that […]

Young Uber drivers to get safety training in the Netherlands

Young Uber drivers to get safety training in the Netherlands

The app-based taxi service Uber will require its younger drivers to undertake mandatory safety training with Safe Traffic Netherlands, a road safety NGO, following a series of deaths where Uber drivers were involved. Four deaths involving the company’s vehicles occurred in a six-week period, prompting urgent discussions with the company. According to Safe Traffic Netherlands, Uber has now taken measures to ensure that their drivers are limited in how long they can drive using the app.  The minimum age to be employed as an […]

UK and Sweden set for automated car trials as manufacturers more cautious on part-time automation

UK and Sweden set for automated car trials as manufacturers more cautious on part-time automation

The UK department for transport has updated its code of practice for trials of autonomous vehicles on British roads to potentially enable use of safety drivers not inside the vehicle but supervising and operating cars by remote control. The updated requirements, published by the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles, also set out the need for organisations carrying out tests to undertake risk assessments and publish safety information and trial performance reports. Meanwhile the Swedish Transport Agency has approved an application from Zenuity, a […]

Calls for 30km/h limits in Austrian cities

Calls for 30km/h limits in Austrian cities

KFV, ETSC’s Austrian member, is calling for the doubling of penalties for traffic offences where children are involved and a default 30 km/h speed limit in cities as part of a range of recommendations to better protect children. Eight children (up to the age of 14) die on Austrian roads every year, on average, while around 300 are seriously injured, according to KFV analysis of data from 2013 to 2017. The number of collisions involving children has not decreased for five years.

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