The Road Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has held its Road Safety Conference, which provided a platform to discuss practical initiatives and policies that will ultimately protect vulnerable road users.
Held at Edgbaston Cricket Ground, the Conference tackled the protection of vulnerable road users, making it the key theme for the annual event.
Key policy makers were on hand, as were academics and practitioners who delivered case studies of the dangers posed, both on rural and urban roads.
The event from RoSPA is important when you consider the figures – from Highways England – that one in eight of all road casualties are caused by people driving too close to the vehicle in front.
For HGVs in particular, the number of deaths caused by these trucks far outweighs the percentage of them on the UK’s roads, suggesting a real problem.
The Road Safety Conference invited speakers along who are working to eradicate these incidents.
Stuart Reid, interim director for Vision Zero on behalf of Transport for London (TfL), was one of the speakers at the event.
He told delegates how TfL is working towards Vision Zero, while encouraging the target of getting 80% of Londoners either walking, cycling or using public transport.
For those walking and cycling, the likes of HGVs pose a significant danger because it has been proven that many cannot see cyclists or pedestrians from their cabs.
Vision Zero seeks to eradicate collisions, and delegates heard about TfL’s plans.
It also highlights the need for greater technology to ensure fleet safety, ensuring those that drive the vehicles benefit from greater vision.
Other speakers at the one-day event included Ameena Berkowitz, policy adviser for Road Safety Policy (Vulnerable Road Users) from the Department for Transport; Joe Green, transportation behaviour change manager from Birmingham City Council; and Lyn Morris, road safety officer of Carmarthenshire Road Safety.
Dr Karen McDonnell, head of RoSPA Scotland, was also on hand to outline the recently launched National Accident Prevention Strategy.