Professor Fred Wegman, a road safety expert from The Netherlands, is in SA for ten weeks as ‘thinker in residence’ to support the development of a national and now SA Road Safety Strategy (2011 – 2020). This is an opportunity for cyclists to lobby for improved road safety.

At a meeting on 13-May-2010, Heather asked the second public question and the first of questions by three cyclists. The following is the gist of it.
Heather, coordinator of Prospect Bicycle User Group. PLEASE do something for the safety of vulnerable road users who choose to use sustainable transport of the bicycle. My local council is trying to persuade Transport to change Prospect Road that involves overlooking the Cycling Strategy of SA and several State and Federal Government documents, like removing bicycle lanes.
Prof Wegman replied that he comes from a cycling country and will look at safety / promoting cycling.
The audience clapped. It was the only Q & A that elicited audience clapping.


www.thinkingroadsafety.com.au


Partners in the residency: Department of the Premier & Cabinet, Department of Transport, Energy & Infrastructure, Department of Education & Children’s Services, Motor Accident Commission, SAPOL, RAA, The City of Unley, Flinders University, University of Adelaide, University of SA. Included the Government of South Australia emblem.

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Good to hear Heather. It sounds like a good choice for a thinker in residence.

I remember the previous Thinker, A Fred ? from city of Portland transportation department, was quite supportive of cycling and pedestrians. I wonder if his report made recommendations about this.
I do not know. Ask BISA and post any knowledge on Adelaide Cyclists.
Have read that Portland is very progressive with cycling, actually removing some roadways to put in cycleways. Ironic that Portland with snow, mountains and dangerous wild animals is more supportive of cycling than Adelaide.
Thinking Road Safety
Published in Road Safety eNewsletter, Edition 8, Jun-2010.

Adelaide Thinker in Residence, Professor Fred Wegman was in Adelaide last month thinking and talking about road safety.

Professor Wegman is one of the world's most respected road safety experts and Managing Director of the Institute for Road Safety Research in the Netherlands – a country at the forefront of road safety performance.

When in Adelaide, Professor Wegman stirred public debate on speed limits; filled Bonython Hall for a public lecture on Driving down the road toll; and led a discussion with key stakeholders regarding South Australia’s next road safety strategy.

Professor Wegman will return to Adelaide later in the year but in the meantime he wants to hear your thoughts on road safety – go to www.thinkingroadsafety.com.au

We’re fortunate here in South Australia that so many passionate individuals tirelessly work to improve safety on our roads – many of whom are volunteers.
Driving Down the Road Toll: Building a safer system
Prof Fred Wegman presentation on 13-May-2010 in Bonython Hall.
Professor Wegman, a road safety expert from The Netherlands, is currently SA ‘thinker in residence’ to support the development of a national and now SA Road Safety Strategy (2011 – 2020)

Partners in residency: Department of the Premier & Cabinet, Department of Transport Energy & Infrastructure (DTEI), Department of Education & Children’s Services, Motor Accident Commission, SAPOL, RAA, The City of Unley, Flinders University, University of Adelaide, University of SA. Govt of SA emblem.
www.thinkingroadsafety.com.au

Excuse this longer posting, but may interest you with cycling mentioned.
Earlier I posted my Q & A on Prospect BUG. Here are more very abbreviated notes. Recommend that you search for more info on the web. Provided two URL-links that I did not catch.

Support the development of a national and now SA Road Safety Strategy (2011 – 2020).
Integrate road safety into the 30-Year Plan for Greater Adelaide.
The Netherlands road fatality rates: 1000 in 1950, 3250 in 1974, down to 750 in 2010, even though 20 times more traffic. US making less progress that some other areas.

SUNflavor comparing Sweden, UK and The Netherlands on road safety. Countries have dissimilar policies but implementation differs at detail level.

The summit conquers (SWOV 2007). Institute for Road Safety Research found that worst drivers are males aged 14 to 25 years. Driving ability then improves, but after age 65 increase in collisions for male and female. Overall, females are safer drivers.

Risk-increasing (specific) factors: lack of experience, alcohol / drugs, fatigue, distraction (mobile phone, iPod), etc.
Basic (generic) factors: speed, mass (kinetic energy), vulnerability of human body.
Promoting ‘libertarian paternalism’ they argue, that choice architects (system designers / managers) can nudge people to make choices that will lead to better outcomes.

Next steps to improve safety require a paradigm shift:
Road traffic today is inherently dangerous.
Adjust the environment to humans.

How crashes develop (based on Reason) studies by another specialist.

Special issues: speed management, drink & drugs, inexperience, cyclists & pedestrians, mobility scooters, heavy goods vehicles.

Redundancy latent errors (system gaps) of the systems, so not fully dependent on if roads makes an error. Not done in SA for cyclists!

SWOV decreases fatalities by 5.3% per year. 300 – 400 deaths per year less. 500 million euros per year for 350 million euros in road infrastructure. Need to put money in. Has brought down fatalities, but little effects on hospitalised casualties.

His ambitions:
Get understanding of crash causes in SA and discuss results.
Get better view of safety problems in Adelaide and regional area.
Raise awareness of road safety problem.

Questions and Answers
Public: Heather, coordinator of Prospect Bicycle User Group. PLEASE do something for the safety of vulnerable road users who choose to use sustainable transport of the bicycle. My local council is trying to persuade transport to change Prospect Road that involves overlooking the Cycling Strategy of SA and several State and Federal Government documents, like removing bicycle lanes.
Prof Wegman: He comes from a cycling country and will look at safety / promoting cycling.
The audience clapped. It was the only Q & A that elicited audience clapping.

Public: Study shows tinted windows are not safe for drivers, especially at night.
Prof Wegman: Drivers need eye contact.

Public: How did he sell lower speed limits?
Prof Wegman: Economics of slower transport vs value of life. There is info on economic benefits of slower speeds. Individual perception more travelling time but arrive home safe.
Public: Also environment and economic factors.

Public in forensic science: No drugs in driving.
Prof Wegman: Alcohol very high safety risk. Hashish less dangerous driving than alcohol. But no risk factors should be tolerated.

Paradigm shift of thinking. City and country drivers vary. City people may accept lower speed limits on open roads. Country people seek more liberal speed.

Public who is pedestrian cyclists and driver: Strikes her attitude of car a priority.
Prof Wegman: After one week cannot comment answer, but realise emphasis on car society in Australia.

Public who cycles: Strict Liability legislation, following on from previous question of cycling. Has it changed culture in The Netherlands?
Prof Wegman: In Netherlands the holy cow is bicycle not car. Do not have problem that SA may. Lots of facilities for cyclists. 80 km/h for open road, nearly all have separated cycle paths. Not the case when he was a boy so has changed.

Public who is police officer: Emphasis on system. What role do you see on diver education? Experienced UK police officer thinks SA concentrates on road design and enforcement but not education. All three in UK.
Prof Wegman: Thinks education is important, but not all education is effective.

Public who is health professional: Managing health of drivers.
Prof Wegman: Drivers over 75 years higher risk. Cognitive ability.

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