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ETSC and Dutch Safety Board want improvements to assisted driving standards

ETSC and Dutch Safety Board want improvements to assisted driving standards

The ETSC, together with founder-member the Dutch Safety Board, have written to the European Commission raising a number of concerns about the regulation of assisted driving systems. The Dutch Safety Board has investigated a number of collisions involving driver assistance systems in the past, and published a groundbreaking report on the issue in 2019. ETSC and the Dutch Safety Board have already raised numerous concerns about these driver assistance systems (Level 2 systems) with names like ‘Autopilot’ and ‘Drive pilot’ which can lead to […]

Opinion : Brexit can seriously damage your health

Opinion : Brexit can seriously damage your health

By David Ward, Executive President of the Towards Zero Foundation, an ETSC member Brexit is not just damaging the British economy; it can now seriously damage your health too. From July 6th proven life-saving technologies such as autonomous emergency braking and intelligent speed assistance will be a mandatory fitment for new model passenger cars and commercial vehicles across the EU. The General Safety Regulation (GSR) will be phased in over a number of years and eventually apply to all new vehicles on European roads. […]

European Commission and IEA call for lower speeds on highways

European Commission and IEA call for lower speeds on highways

The International Energy Agency and the European Commission have outlined a range of simple steps that people can take to reduce their energy use and save money, and that would save enough oil to fill 120 super tankers and enough natural gas to heat almost 20 million homes if adopted by all EU citizens.  The measures include the suggestion to reduce highway speeds, and to walk and cycle or take public transport in urban areas. The actions, designed to help Ukraine by cutting the […]

ETSC Statement: The Russian Federation must step aside from its lead negotiating role on road safety at the UN General Assembly

ETSC Statement: The Russian Federation must step aside from its lead negotiating role on road safety at the UN General Assembly

On 30 June and 1 July 2022, the UN General Assembly is holding a High-Level Meeting on Road Safety. Since hosting the 1st Ministerial on Road Safety in Moscow in 2009, the Russian Federation has led UN GA deliberations on successive resolutions and will do so again in the process of deciding on a Member States’ Declaration to be adopted at the next High Level Meeting. Following the illegal invasion of Ukraine, the Russian Federation’s position leading road safety in the UNGA is now […]

Finnish researchers say e-scooter riders more likely to be injured than pedestrians, cyclists and motorcycle riders

Finnish researchers say e-scooter riders more likely to be injured than pedestrians, cyclists and motorcycle riders

A Finnish research team investigating e-scooter related injuries has said their data show a higher rate of e-scooter injuries compared to other transport modes analysed in earlier studies. The new research identified 331 patients with e-scooter-related injuries who were admitted to the accident and emergency department in Tampere, a city of some 226,000 people in Finland, between April 2019 and April 2021. Data from scooter rental companies operating in the Finnish city revealed that e-scooter riders took over 1.8 million trips during that period, […]

50 km/h roads where cyclists and cars mix are disproportionately dangerous according to new Dutch data

50 km/h roads where cyclists and cars mix are disproportionately dangerous according to new Dutch data

Figures published earlier this month by Statistics Netherlands show that cyclists account for an increasing share in the number of road deaths. While the number of fatal car crashes has fallen dramatically since 2000 in the Netherlands, the number of fatal bicycle collisions continues to hover around 200 per year. In the past two years, more cyclists than motorists have been involved in collisions. In 2021, 582 people died in traffic collisions. That is a decrease compared to 2020 when 610 road users were […]

Call for lower speed limits to help reduce dependence on Russian oil

Call for lower speed limits to help reduce dependence on Russian oil

ETSC, together with environmental and road safety organisations, has written to the European Commissioners responsible for Climate Action, Energy, Environment and Transport, calling for recommendations on lower speed limits as a way of tackling dependence on Russian oil, as well as emissions and road deaths. The six organisations say that with the catastrophic invasion of Ukraine, European reliance on Russian oil has become a strategic threat and the current crisis requires bold action. The European Parliament called for an EU recommendation on lower speed […]

Rethymno in Greece is the winner of the EU Urban Road Safety Award

The winners of the annual European Mobility Week Awards, the Sustainable Urban Mobility Planning Award and the EU Urban Road Safety Award were crowned earlier this week at a ceremony in Brussels.  The Urban Road Safety Award was won by Rethymno in Greece.  The jury commented that it was impressed by, “Rethymno’s inclusive approach to road safety, which targets three main pillars: upgrading the public transport system, increasing and encouraging behavioural change through a variety of activities, and the establishment of integrated cooperation with […]

100 German cities want the right to set 30 km/h limits

100 German cities want the right to set 30 km/h limits

An initiative in Germany to push for local government powers to set 30 km/h limits has signed-up its 100th city.   The “Lebenswerte Städte durch angemessene Geschwindigkeiten” campaign, which can be roughly translated as “Liveable cities need reasonable speeds”, is calling on the federal government to change the law in order to let local authorities introduce 30 km/h speed limits more easily.  The current road traffic law sets narrow limits for the local authorities and only allows speed limits to be changed when specific hazards […]

Lack of standard safety features on vans criticised

Lack of standard safety features on vans criticised

ADAC, a German motoring organisation, has said it cannot recommend 18 out of 19 top selling vans due to a lack of safety features on their entry-level models. A recent series of tests by Euro NCAP was more positive, but it tested vehicles with optional safety equipment fitted.  ADAC says most vans are sold in their cheapest, stripped down form – so decided to investigate these models. According to the German Federal Statistical Office, vans were involved in over 14,000 crashes involving injury in […]

ETSC Reaction to the 2021 EU Road Safety Figures

ETSC Reaction to the 2021 EU Road Safety Figures

The European Commission has published figures for road deaths in the 27 EU Member States in 2021, showing that 19 800 people were killed in a road crash last year.  This represents an increase of 5% compared to 2020 – the year of Covid-19 lockdowns, and a 13% reduction  compared to 2019, the last year before the pandemic. Commenting on the new figures, Antonio Avenoso, Executive Director of the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) said: “Covid-19 has changed some working practices for good, and […]

UK government advised to introduce mandatory helmets and a minimum age of 16 for e-scooters

UK government advised to introduce mandatory helmets and a minimum age of 16 for e-scooters

ETSC’s member PACTS has set out its recommendations for private e-scooter use in case of legalisation by the UK government, following a nine-month research project involving hospitals, police, NGOs and industry representatives. Rented e-scooters are currently legal in many UK cities, but private use is prohibited despite up to a million of the vehicles having been imported to the UK in recent years.  E-scooters are legal to buy – but their use is limited, in theory, to private land.  In practice most users are […]

Opinion: Lower speed limits are a triple win for reducing dependence on Russian oil, emissions and road injury.

Opinion: Lower speed limits are a triple win for reducing dependence on Russian oil, emissions and road injury.

A letter published in today’s edition of the Financial Times: The move by the EU to phase out imports of Russian oil by 2027 is a welcome development in light of the barbaric invasion of Ukraine (“EU plans emergency measures to control surging energy bills”, Report, March 12). Urgent action is needed. We would like to recommend a measure that could be taken quickly and relatively simply to significantly cut oil imports in the EU in the short term: reduce speed limits across the […]

Enforcement of rules on drink-driving and mobile phone use at the wheel decreases in majority of European countries

Enforcement of rules on drink-driving and mobile phone use at the wheel decreases in majority of European countries

Significant weaknesses in the enforcement of road safety rules are holding back progress on reducing road deaths in Europe, according to a new report from the European Transport Safety Council. The report examines the state of enforcement of speed limits and seatbelt wearing as well as rules on drink-driving and use of mobile devices at the wheel between 2010 and 2019 across Europe. Ellen Townsend, ETSC’s policy director, commented: “Thousands of lives could be saved in the EU every year if drivers stuck to […]

Car black boxes will be virtually useless to safety researchers

Car black boxes will be virtually useless to safety researchers

Electronic data recorders, which will be mandatory in new models of car from this summer, will be of little use to safety experts due to a ban on the retrieval of data containing location, date and time information from the devices, according to ETSC. Last month, the European Commission published the final technical specifications for the devices, which are one of a number of mandatory new technologies agreed as part of a 2019 update of EU vehicle safety laws. Information on location, date and […]

Report for the European Commission finds benefits of alcohol interlocks for HGVs outweigh costs

Report for the European Commission finds benefits of alcohol interlocks for HGVs outweigh costs

A new report on drink-driving for the European Commission looks at the progress made since 2001 EU guidelines on Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) limits were published and suggests mandatory fitment of alcohol interlocks in heavy goods vehicles could be a worthwhile investment. The researchers found that, since the publication of the EU Recommendation (2001/115/EC), BAC limits in the EU have further harmonised with at least eight countries having introduced a lower BAC level for drivers and 14 for novice and professional drivers. Currently, EU […]

New EU guidance on taxi services lacks action on road safety

New EU guidance on taxi services lacks action on road safety

The European Commission’s mobility department has published new regulatory guidance for taxi services in the EU that ETSC says is a missed opportunity to improve safety in the sector. The new rules have almost no mention of measures to improve the safety standards for drivers, vehicles or passengers despite ‘safe local mobility for citizens’ being mentioned in the scope. According to an ETSC report published in 2016, taxi safety is similar to private cars, yet taxi drivers and their managers have a professional responsibility […]

ETSC welcomes higher standards for automated emergency braking systems on HGVs

ETSC welcomes higher standards for automated emergency braking systems on HGVs

Automated emergency braking systems on HGVs and buses will have to work better in the future thanks to tougher new standards agreed at the UNECE in Geneva which will apply in the EU from 2025 on new types of vehicle. The revision was prompted by collision investigations in Germany involving new lorries which found that the AEB system had been switched off by the driver.  Lorry drivers apparently regularly switch off AEB systems in order to enable them to drive closer to the vehicle […]

UK law commissions say manufacturers should be responsible for self-driving car crashes

UK law commissions say manufacturers should be responsible for self-driving car crashes

A new report from the UK’s independent law commissions recommends introducing a new Automated Vehicles Act, to regulate vehicles that can drive themselves. It also recommends drawing a clear distinction between features which just assist drivers, such as Tesla’s Autopilot, and those that are fully self-driving. Under the law commissions’ proposals, when a car is authorised by a regulatory agency as having “self-driving features” and those features are in-use, the person in the driving seat would no longer be responsible for how the car […]

Several countries tighten e-scooter rules as German study finds huge underreporting of injuries

Several countries tighten e-scooter rules as German study finds huge underreporting of injuries

Several governments are updating rules on e-scooter use, as more evidence emerges of the particular risks faced by users of this novel mode of transport. Denmark introduced mandatory helmets from 1 January this year, following research that showed the risks of an e-scooter crash are seven times higher than for bicycles. Norway will also introduce mandatory helmets for children up to 15 years old later in the spring and introduce a drink-drive limit of 0.2 g/l Blood Alcohol Concentration (BAC) – the same as […]

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