Urban mobility

European Commission seeks feedback on driving licence rules and urban mobility

European Commission seeks feedback on driving licence rules and urban mobility

The European Commission has launched public consultations on two road safety-linked issues. The first consultation looks at current EU rules on driver licensing, ahead of an update to the legislation scheduled for next year. Relevant issues could include medical fitness to drive, and the need for graduated licenses for young and novice drivers. The second has been launched in preparation for a new EU urban mobility strategy, which ETSC hopes will contain more in the way of concrete measures to improve urban road safety […]

Is car no longer king in Berlin?

Is car no longer king in Berlin?

A new “pedestrian law” has been passed in Berlin, with the aim of shifting the priority away from cars, and further towards vulnerable road users. At the end of January, Berlin’s state parliament passed a so-called pedestrian law — an amendment to a 2018 law that focused on improving traffic safety for cyclists. Both were the first of their kind in Germany, according to DW – a German news broadcaster. The new requirements include: longer green lights for pedestrians, safer routes to school, more […]

ETSC’s priorities for the Portuguese presidency of the EU

ETSC’s priorities for the Portuguese presidency of the EU

Portugal took over the EU Presidency on 1 January 2021 as the EU continues to grapple with the Covid-19 crisis, which has brought additional challenges for transport and mobility policies.  In a new briefing, ETSC has outlined its recommendations on the key EU road safety policy dossiers to be steered by the Portuguese Presidency over the next six months. The issues covered include the new sustainable and smart mobility strategy, EU-Africa cooperation on road safety, the urban mobility package, opportunities for transport safety funding […]

European Commission announces major package of transport safety initiatives

European Commission announces major package of transport safety initiatives

Updated rules on cross-border enforcement of traffic offences, vehicle roadworthiness, automated vehicles, and driving licenses and a proposal to add eCall automated emergency calling devices to motorcycles, trucks and buses are among a major package of new legislative measures for the transport sector announced by the European Commission last week. The new Sustainable and Smart Mobility Strategy follows the pattern of recent years of bundling up an array of new related measures into a package rather than announcing them individually. The Commission also says […]

New ITF report on urban road safety best practice

New ITF report on urban road safety best practice

A new report from the OECD’s International Transport Forum (ITF) presents seven case studies of cities that are implementing data-driven road safety policies. It highlights relevant experiences aimed at reducing the number of traffic casualties and protecting vulnerable road users in cities. The case studies from Barcelona, Bogota, Buenos Aires, Fortaleza, London, New York and Rotterdam illustrate the diverse approaches to better understand road crashes and to prevent road traffic deaths and serious injuries. https://www.itf-oecd.org/best-practice-urban-road-safety

Opinion: Back to school wearing masks, so how about some more protected bike lanes?

Opinion: Back to school wearing masks, so how about some more protected bike lanes?

Ellen Townsend, Policy Director After the extraordinary period of lockdown, and an unprecedented 36% drop in road deaths in the EU,  extraordinary measures are now being taken to get society and the economy back to normal, or rather, a new kind of normal.   Cinemas and theatres are starting to reopen, with lots of empty seats to maintain social distancing.  In Brussels, as I write this, it is now mandatory to wear a mask when outside, unless you are involved in a sporting activity.  It […]

Report calls for action on goods vehicle safety

Report calls for action on goods vehicle safety

A quarter (25%) of road deaths in the European Union are the consequence of a collision involving a goods vehicle, according to the European Transport Safety Council, authors of a new report on the safety of goods transport by road. According to the new analysis, 3310 people lost their lives in police-reported road collisions involving a heavy goods vehicle (HGV) of 3.5 tonnes or above in the 27 countries of the EU in 2018. In the same year, 2630 people were killed in collisions […]

How to improve the safety of goods vehicles in the EU? (PIN Flash 39)

How to improve the safety of goods vehicles in the EU? (PIN Flash 39)

Since the last ETSC PIN report looking at the safety of goods and passenger transport was published in 2013, the transport sector has continued to evolve. Just-in-time delivery in many industries; next-day delivery of single items from online shops; clothes bought, tried on and then returned; supermarket home delivery – in the background of all these services is an international network of transport that ends with goods vehicles crisscrossing countries, cities and towns. This report looks at the toll transport of goods and services […]

Pontevedra, Spain, wins the first EU urban road safety award

Pontevedra, Spain, wins the first EU urban road safety award

The European Commission has announced the winners of four sustainable mobility awards including the first ever prize for urban road safety, awarded to Pontevedra in Spain. Pontevedra has reduced road deaths consistently since 1999, impressively achieving zero road deaths between 2011 and 2018. A host of measures ensure that safety and sustainability go hand-in-hand. The city used a clear and careful monitoring strategy to identify which policies are effective and which need to be updated, resulting in increased active mobility, such as walking and […]

Commission launches Covid-19 transport exit plan

Commission launches Covid-19 transport exit plan

The European Commission has published a series of recommendations for transport policy as Member States transition out of lockdown.  The main focus of the “communication” is to advise on ways of ensuring freight and passenger transport services can operate safely, with appropriate protections and social distancing requirements.  However ETSC wrote to Commissioner Valean in early May pointing out important road safety considerations to be taken into account for the exit strategy. In the letter, ETSC stressed that any flexibility or suspension to road safety […]

Letter: Prioritising transport safety during and after the COVID-19 crisis

Letter: Prioritising transport safety during and after the COVID-19 crisis

A letter from ETSC to European Commission for Transport Adina-Ioana Vălean on prioritising transport safety during and after the COVID-19 crisis. Download the letter.

COVID-19: Cities adapting road infrastructure and speed limits to enable safer cycling and walking

COVID-19: Cities adapting road infrastructure and speed limits to enable safer cycling and walking

Berlin, Brussels, Milan and Paris have all announced infrastructure changes to promote cycling and walking during the COVID-19 confinement period. Berlin has already temporarily widened cycle lanes to allow safe overtaking with social distancing limits in mind. Milan, meanwhile is closing 35km of streets to car traffic, introducing more 30 km/h limits and converting streets  to cycling and pedestrian-priority. In France, Paris and several other large cities have announced large rollouts of cycle lanes for during and after the lockdown. In the Belgian capital […]

EU Urban Safety Award Nominees announced

EU Urban Safety Award Nominees announced

The European Commission has announced the first ever Urban Road Safety Award nominees.  The awards will celebrate outstanding and innovative achievements by local authorities in the area of road safety. The finalists are: Jaworzno (Poland); Ordu (Turkey) and Pontevedra (Spain). The jury praised, in particular, Jaworzno’s action to reduce speed limits, increase the number of public transport users, and involve local residents in the design of renovated streets.  Ordu’s “courageous” decision to pedestrianise the busiest parts of the city, remove heavy car traffic from […]

ITF report recommends action on safety of e-scooters

ITF report recommends action on safety of e-scooters

A new study by the International Transport Forum’s “Corporate Partnership Board” examines several safety aspects of e-scooters and other micro-vehicles and makes a number of recommendations. In general the report recommends treating e-scooters in the same way as bicycles with separated infrastructure, restricting their use on pavements (or requiring a lower speed) and not subjecting the vehicles to EU type-approval rules. ETSC is concerned about evidence of higher numbers of severe injuries among e-scooter riders compared to cyclists and is calling for more and […]

Zero cyclist and pedestrian deaths in Helsinki and Oslo last year

Zero cyclist and pedestrian deaths in Helsinki and Oslo last year

Two European capitals, Helsinki and Oslo, achieved the milestone of zero pedestrian and cyclist deaths last year.  Remarkably, Norway also reported zero child road deaths nationally for the first time, based on ages 0-15. ETSC’s most recent PIN report (based on 2018 data) showed that Norway had the lowest road mortality in Europe, at 20 deaths per million inhabitants.  The country also recorded the largest drop in road deaths since 2010 – highlighting that an already high performing country can continue to make rapid […]

How safe is walking and cycling in Europe? (PIN Flash 38)

How safe is walking and cycling in Europe? (PIN Flash 38)

The European Union (EU) is facing a multitude of interconnected demographic, public health and environmental challenges: the climate is changing; road deaths are stagnating; urbanisation is increasing, air pollution is worsening, obesity is rising and the population is ageing. But there is an increasing recognition at local, but also national and EU level, that boosting the levels of active mobility, particularly walking and cycling, can play an important role in overcoming many of these challenges.  Such a policy will also have economic benefits. Based […]

Poland to end 60 km/h night-time urban speed limit

Poland to end 60 km/h night-time urban speed limit

The Prime Minister of Poland has announced that the country’s anomalous night-time 60 km/h speed limits in urban areas will soon be scrapped, as part of a new package of road safety measures. Poland is the only country in Europe with different speed limits in urban areas during the day and at night.  The speed limit will be changed to 50 km/h at all times. Hungary, which reduced its urban speed limit from 60 to 50 km/h in 1993, saw a reduction in mean […]

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 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 […]

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 […]

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