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Zero tolerance could help prevent up to 5,000 alcohol-linked road deaths a year in the EU

Zero tolerance could help prevent up to 5,000 alcohol-linked road deaths a year in the EU

The European Union should introduce a zero-tolerance drink-driving limit in 2020 as part of a package of measures to help prevent up to 5,000 alcohol-linked road deaths every year, according to the European Transport Safety Council, authors of a new report. The EU has recently set a target to reduce deaths and serious injuries on the road by half by 2030 (1). A quarter of the 25,000 EU road deaths each year are likely to be linked to alcohol, according to European Commission estimates.  […]

Collisions involving “Autopilot”-style driver assistance systems – ETSC welcomes publication of Dutch Safety Board investigation

Collisions involving “Autopilot”-style driver assistance systems – ETSC welcomes publication of Dutch Safety Board investigation

ETSC has welcomed a new report by the Dutch Safety Board that warns of multiple safety risks posed by advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS) such as Tesla Autopilot. The conclusion of a two-year long investigation which encompassed multiple real-world crash investigations, the report raises a number of questions about the safety of ADAS systems, notably those that combine features such as automated cruise control with lane keeping and automated braking. Among the issues raised by the report are: – human factor problems such as […]

New EU transport commissioner commits to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030

New EU transport commissioner commits to halve road deaths and serious injuries by 2030

Adina-Ioana Vălean, a Romanian politician, MEP and chair of the European Parliament’s Industry committee will take over from Violeta Bulc as European Commissioner for Transport from 1 December. Mrs Vălean was approved for the role at a European Parliament hearing on 14 November.  In her opening statement to MEPs she said: “25 000 [deaths] per year is simply unacceptable. We should share the objective of halving the number of road deaths and serious injuries by 2030 compared to 2020.” Later at the same hearing, […]

EU Member States rubber-stamp new vehicle safety requirements

EU Member States rubber-stamp new vehicle safety requirements

New minimum vehicle and pedestrian safety standards have been formally approved by EU Member States following a political agreement reached with the European Parliament in March. The legislation was formally signed by representatives of the European Council and Parliament at a ceremony on 27 November. 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 the updated “General Safety Regulation” requirements. After years of research, advocacy and […]

Regulator says Uber’s license to operate taxis in London will be withdrawn on safety grounds

Regulator says Uber’s license to operate taxis in London will be withdrawn on safety grounds

Transport for London (TfL) has said it will not grant Uber a new taxi operator’s licence which could lead to the service being suspended. TfL said it had identified a “pattern of failures” by the company including several breaches that placed passengers and their safety at risk. Despite Uber having addressed some of these issues, TfL said it does not have confidence that similar issues will not reoccur in the future, which has led it to conclude that the company is not “fit and […]

“Inadequate safety culture” contributed to fatal Uber automated test vehicle crash

“Inadequate safety culture” contributed to fatal Uber automated test vehicle crash

The US National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) has called on the US federal government to create a review process before allowing automated test vehicles to operate on public roads, based upon the agency’s investigation of a fatal collision between an Uber automated test vehicle and a pedestrian. During a board meeting held to determine the probable cause of the Arizona crash on 18 March 2018, the NTSB said Uber’s “inadequate safety culture” contributed to the fatal collision between an Uber automated test vehicle and […]

Brussels-wide 30 km/h zone confirmed as Lille reaches 88% street coverage

Brussels-wide 30 km/h zone confirmed as Lille reaches 88% street coverage

Almost the whole of the Belgian capital will be covered by 30 km/h limits from January 2021 the city’s new minister of transport has confirmed. The announcement of the policy was accompanied by the news that automated speed enforcement capacity in the city will be increased and 30 high risk sites will be treated.  A publicity campaign encouraging drivers to respect the new limit ahead of its formal launch has also been running across the city since the announcement. Public pressure for road safety […]

ETSC statement on Dutch 100 km/h motorway speed limit proposal

ETSC statement on Dutch 100 km/h motorway speed limit proposal

Commenting on the Dutch government’s plans to decrease the speed limit on motorways during daytime from 130 km/h to 100 km/h, Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council commented: “Higher speeds are always associated with a higher frequency of collisions and more severe consequences.  So a reduction in speeds on Dutch motorways will save lives. That’s to be welcomed, especially as motorway deaths in the Netherlands reached their highest level in a decade last year.  (1) “However, it is important to […]

Poland: Prime Minister promises boost for road safety

Poland: Prime Minister promises boost for road safety

The Polish Prime Minister has promised to make road safety a priority.  In a Facebook post on 29 October Mateusz Morawiecki said “A comprehensive plan for the radical improvement of road safety will be one of the government’s priorities in the new term.” Road safety protests were sparked in Warsaw last month after a fatal collision between a BMW car – reportedly being driven at 130 km/h on a road where the speed limit was 50 km/h – and a man pushing a baby […]

It’s time for a zero drink-driving limit across the EU

ETSC has launched a short video explaining why the EU needs a common drink-driving limit set at zero. Watch/share on YouTube and Twitter.

ETSC backing European Parliamentary working group on sustainable and safe active mobility

ETSC backing European Parliamentary working group on sustainable and safe active mobility

ETSC is linking up with 15 organisations to call for the setting-up of a new European Parliamentary “intergroup” to work on sustainable and safe active mobility. Intergroups are unofficial working groups of MEPs, organised around topics of common interest that may not be well covered by official committees.  52 MEPs from across the political spectrum have so-far said they would support the intergroup. ETSC’s role will be to advise the group on how the ongoing shift towards more sustainable and healthy transport modes can […]

Finnish “cars for kids” plans postponed following European Commission warnings

Finnish “cars for kids” plans postponed following European Commission warnings

The entry-into-force of a new law in Finland to permit children as young as 15 to drive regular cars fitted with speed limiters has been postponed following an intervention by the European Commission. The proposals, put forward last year by the government, would have allowed children to drive cars up to 1500kg at speeds of up to 60 km/h and with only an AM category license – normally reserved for mopeds and light quadricycles.  The original legal proposal set a speed limit of 45 […]

ETSC responds to European Commission’s new ten-year road safety strategy

ETSC responds to European Commission’s new ten-year road safety strategy

ETSC has welcomed a number of aspects of the EU’s ten-year action plan on road safety, published in June. But ETSC also suggests, in a briefing published earlier this month, that a number of areas will require bolder action in order to reach the ambitious targets set out in the Commission’s plan. The ETSC report highlights the following elements of the Commission’s proposals that are particularly welcome: A new target to halve road deaths between 2020 and 2030 as well as, for the first […]

French départements sticking with 80km/h on rural roads

French départements sticking with 80km/h on rural roads

A growing number of French regional authorities (départements) are going back on plans to raise some rural road speed limits from 80 km/h to 90. France reduced the national speed limit on 400,000 km of unseparated rural roads from 90km/h to 80 in July last year – a move which led to the prevention of 206 deaths in one year, according to official figures. But the French government announced in May that it would modify the law to enable local authorities to raise the […]

Emergency corridors coming to Poland

Emergency corridors coming to Poland

Poland is the eighth European country to implement an “emergency corridor” system to clear the way for emergency vehicles on congested roads. The system, which has been shown to reduce response times by 4 minutes, and increase survival rates by 40%, is already used in Austria, the Czech Republic, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, Slovenia and Switzerland but was not widely known outside of those countries. The system was a focus of ETSC’s REVIVE project on improving post-collision response and was presented at a number of […]

German parliament rejects 130 km/h limit on motorways

German parliament rejects 130 km/h limit on motorways

A proposal by Green MPs to introduce a national 130 km/h top speed limit on motorways in Germany was rejected in a vote in the Bundestag earlier this month. A government commission included the limit as one of a number of options for reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the transport sector in a report published earlier this year. Data analysis by the news organisation Der Spiegel found that the measure could prevent 140 deaths every year. At the time, the German transport minister Andreas […]

New e-mobility vehicles need independent checks says Dutch Safety Board

New e-mobility vehicles need independent checks says Dutch Safety Board

A review by the Dutch Safety Board of the procedures that led to approval of the Stint electric child cart for use on Dutch roads, says that “safety was made subordinate to the desire for innovation in road transport.” Four children died when the electrically-assisted cart that they were travelling in collided with a train at a railway crossing in September last year.  The exact causes of the collision have not been published so far, but independent investigations carried out both before and after […]

Romania introduces tougher sanctions for using a phone at the wheel

Romania introduces tougher sanctions for using a phone at the wheel

Within two days of new rules on distracted driving coming into force in Romania this month, 310 fines were issued by the police, according to official figures. The new rules, which cover calling and texting but also new trends such as filming and taking photos while driving, include significant fines, of around EUR 200, and penalty points for those seen breaking the law. Drivers caught using their phone at the same time as committing another offence will accumulate more points and higher fines, and […]

More enforcement needed to reverse decline in Dutch motorway safety

More enforcement needed to reverse decline in Dutch motorway safety

Dutch motorways are becoming less safe, according to research by SWOV, the Dutch institute for road safety research. The number of motorway deaths rose to 81 in 2018, the highest figure in more than a decade.  The total number of collisions has more than doubled in five years, from 17,000 in 2014 to more than 38,000 in 2018. SWOV, in a new report, said the main causes of collisions were speeding and drivers being distracted. The organisation also said a shift away from road […]

Road Safety Exchange: Twelve EU Member States team up to improve road safety

Road Safety Exchange: Twelve EU Member States team up to improve road safety

Road Safety Exchange: Twelve EU Member States team up to tackle challenges including speeding, infrastructure safety and improving the safety of pedestrians and cyclists. Twelve EU Member States are joining forces to share smart ideas for improving road safety, as part of a new EU-funded project, launching today in Brussels. Although European roads are the safest in the world and although road safety has improved greatly in recent decades, the number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads is still far too high. […]

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