NTUA Road Safety Update - October 2017

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The European Commission’s Directorate General for Mobility and Transport (DG Move) has released the well expected and breakthrough EU integrated policy for the future of road safety within its new set of actions to modernise Europe’s transport systems with the agenda for safe, clean and connected mobility“.   pdf5  This integrated policy comes together with the revision of road infrastructure safety management directive (with the active contribution of NTUA) and the proposal for a regulation on type-approval requirements for motor vehicles   and the communication on the road to automated mobility.  The full list of proposals, together with the respective fact sheets and supporting documents is available: 

Commissioner for Transport, Violeta Bulc stated that the European Commission has put forward initiatives addressing the challenges of today and paving the way for the mobility of tomorrow; today’s measures constitute a final and important push so that Europeans can benefit from safe, clean and smart transport.

The International Transport Forum‘s 2018 Summit on “Transport Safety and Security” took place with great success on 23 – 25 May 2018 in Leipzig, Germany, with the participation of more than 1.500 key road safety officials, stakeholders and experts. The 2018 edition of this vibrant global conference addressed strategic and topical transport safety issues, including: Cycling, Pedestrians, Urban Space and Health, Planning and Design, Road Infrastructure Safety Management, Measures Assessment, Zero Road Deaths and Serious Injuries, Safe Travel for Women. link  In parallel, the ITF, together with ECTRI, ERTRAC, FERSI, TRB and WCTRS, organised the “Transport Safety and Security” Research Day. link  A new Ministerial Declaration on Transport Safety and Security was agreed by the ITF Member States. pdf5  NTUA Professor George Yannis made a key presentation:

Latest Developments

The United Nations have recently launched the UN Road Safety Trust Fund, aiming to accelerate progress in improving global road safety by bridging the gaps in the mobilization of resources for effective action at all levels. The Fund is expected to mobilize resources from governments, intergovernmental or non-governmental organizations, the private sector, philanthropic organizations and individuals. UNECE estimates that every $1,500 contributed to the Road Safety Trust Fund could: save one life, prevent ten serious injuries, and leverage $51,000 in road safety investment.   

Jean Todt, United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy for Road Safety, stated that the UN Road Safety Trust Fund has the potential to galvanize our global efforts to address the road safety situation, building on the progress made and experience gained over the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020.

The International Road Traffic and Accident Group (IRTAD) of the International Transport Forum (ITF/OECD) published recently a new Report: “Safer Roads with Automated Vehicles?”. This report examines how increasing automation of cars and trucks could affect road safety, and which security vulnerabilities will need to be addressed with the rise of self-driving vehicles. It introduces the principles of Safe System approach and the relevance of Vision Zero for road safety to the wider discussion on vehicle automation.   pdf5

European Commission (DG Employment, Social Affairs and Inclusion) released a very interesting guide containing good practices for managing work related vehicle risks in the EU, with a specific focus on workplace transport, driving for work and working on or near a road. With this interactive e-guide many good practices are provided as well as an overview of relevant regulations and information in three key aspects of vehicle risks: safe driving for work, workplace transport safety, and working on or near a roadlink

A new book titled: “Safe Mobility: Challenges, Methodology and Solutions (Transport and Sustainability)” by Dominique Lord and Simon Washington is just published as Volume 11 in the series Transport and Sustainability. Safe mobility is clearly linked to transport sustainability, as fatalities and injuries resulting from people engaged with transport networks increasingly becomes a public health concern, relative to other health threats. This volume presents the current state of the knowledge across a multitude of analytical and context specific transport safety areas with final aim to make further gains in road safety globally. It includes a comprehensive set of chapters authored by many of the world’s leading experts in both behavioural and engineering aspects of safe mobility. 

Statistics Corner

The International Road Traffic and Accident Database (IRTAD) of the International Transport Forum (ITF/OECD) published the summary version of the Annual Report 2018, which provides an overview of road safety performance for 32 countries. The report outlines the most recent road safety developments across IRTAD countries and provides comparative data for the main road safety indicators also detailed by road user, age group and type of road. Furthermore, the IRTAD Annual Report contains syntheses of the the road safety strategies and targets in place as well on recent trends in speeding, drink-driving and other aspects of road user behaviour. pdf5

Since 53 years, the  International Road Federation (IRF) World Road Statistics (WRS) continue to be the major comprehensive, universal source of statistical data on road networks, traffic and inland transport. Over the past years, the WRS have proved to be an invaluable and internationally accepted reference tool for governments, NGOs, investments banks, research institutes and anyone analyzing and reporting trends in key subject areas like traffic volumes and vehicle usage, road expenditure, road safety, energy consumption and emissions. This year, the WRS 2017 (data 2010-2015) features more than 205 countries, with data on over 45 road related topics, presented in nine substantive sections, with the active contribution of NTUA for the Greek data.  

Our Publications

The Nordic Traffic Safety Academy (NTSA) organised the 7th Annual Scientific Seminar of the Nordic Traffic Safety Academy which took place with great success in Trondheim, on 7-8 May 2018. NTSA is a Nordic forum where academics meet to exchange information and experience in research and education. The aims of the NTSA are to promote scientific discussion within the road traffic safety society on a multidisciplinary base and to enhance the scientific aspect and status of road traffic safety as an academic discipline”. link  NTUA actively contributed with the following presentation:

A Regional Workshop on Road Safety Data organized by the EuroMed Transport Support Project, took place with great success on 8-10 May 2018 in Athens. This Workshop allowed sharing national, European and international experiences and best practices in the Mediterranean Region with road safety data and suggested a road map for the follow up actions.   NTUA actively contributed with five (5) presentations:  More...

A Diploma Thesis titled “Analysis of the impact of autonomous vehicles to travel behaviour” was presented by Panagiotis Papalymperis in March 2018, aiming to analyse the effect of autonomous vehicles on the mobility behaviour as well as to identify the main characteristics that affect this behaviour. For this purpose, data collected from 235 travelers who participated in a stated-preference survey with a questionnaire were analyzed. Through the multinomial and binary regression models developed it appears that time is the parameter with the highest effect on the choice of the mode of transport. Furthermore, respondents expressed an overall positive attitude towards autonomous vehicles, however they were concerned about sharing the vehicle with unknown people, preferring to be alone in an autonomous vehicle  pdf5 ppt5

A paper titled “Impact of real-time traffic characteristics on crash occurrence: The case of rare events” authored by Athanasios TheofilatosGeorge Yannis, Pantelis Kopelias and Fanis Papadimitriou is now published in Accident Analysis and Prevention Journal. This paper investigates crash likelihood by utilizing real-time traffic data from three random loop detectors in the Attica Tollway located in Greater Athens Area in Greece and by proposing a framework driven by appropriate statistical models (Bias Correction and Firth method) in order to overcome the problems that arise when the number of crashes is very low. Under this approach instead of using traditional logistic regression methods, crashes are considered as rare events. The method and findings of the study provide insights on the mechanism of crash occurrence and also revealed that lower speeds are more likely to result in accidentdoi

Point of View

Autonomous vehicles are bringing a very different new reality in road traffic. However, human factors will remain present both in the near future and in the long term, because of the:
  • mixed traffic of autonomous and non-autonomous vehicles during the long transition phases (different at the different places of the world),
  • the interaction with not easily automatable traffic of pedestrians, cyclists and power two-wheelers,
  • the vehicles with dual control (human and autonomous),
  • human factors of the scientists developing and programming the autonomous vehicles and the autonomous transport systems (infrastructure, traffic, etc.).

Upcoming Events

The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) is organizing the 2018 PIN Conference which will take place in Brussels on 18 June, 2018 in Brussels. At the 2018 PIN conference, ETSC will launch its Road Safety Performance Index (PIN) Annual Report. The latest road safety figures will be presented and actions needed to accelerate road safety progress will be identified. This year, child road safety and data collection topics will be highlighted. The event will also feature a high-level panel debate “the European Road Safety Strategy 2020-30”

Click here to download the agenda.

SWOV is organizing the 6th HUMANIST Conference which will be host on 13-14 June 2018 in the Hague, The Netherlands. The theme of the conference is “Towards Vehicle Automation – Human Factors Challenges“. The scope of the conference covers a wide range of topics on Human Factors in Transport. The 2018 conference has a special focus on the Human Factors issues related to transition towards self-driving vehicles. Topics for this year’s symposium include, but are not limited to: Automated Driving and ADAS, Human Machine Interaction, Transition of Control, Driver state, Driver workload and task demand, Interaction of (partly) automated vehicles with vulnerable road users, Human factors in mixed traffic conditions, Older drivers / novice drivers, Naturalistic Driving studies, and Eco-driving. 

Road Safety Systems


This Road Safety Update aims to support frequently the Greek and the International Road Safety Community with current key road safety knowledge and data, which are gathered, analysed and organised within the research activities of the Department of Transportation Planning and Engineering of the National Technical University of Athens.

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