July 2011 PACTS Newsletter

EVENTS
“Older, Wiser and Safer: ensuring safe mobility for an ageing population”
October 13th 2011
Venue: the Royal Society of Medicine, One Wimpole Street, London WC1.
‘More Haste, Less Speed: changing behaviour for safety and sustainability’
22nd Westminster Lecture to be given by Dr Jillian Anable, University of Aberdeen
November 30th 2011
Venue: Church House Conference Centre, London SW1
Invitations will be sent out during July.
NEWS
PACTS Comments on 2010 Reported Road Casualties
Commenting on figures published today by the Department for Transport showing road deaths at an all-time low, Robert Gifford, Executive Director of the Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety (PACTS), said “These figures are obviously a good news story for the road safety profession and for the community that it serves. They are the result of over 20 years commitment to improving safety by successive governments of all parties and by the public, private and professional sectors. That said, we should not ignore the fact that each of the deaths and serious injuries will affect families for years to come. We also cannot ignore the fact that any of the slight injury crashes could have been more serious if other factors had intervened.
“It is especially good to note that car occupant deaths have fallen by 46% since 2006. This is more than the effect of the recession. It shows that improvements in car design, increased levels of enforcement via safety cameras and drink-drive campaigns and investment in road engineering make a real difference.
“One issue of concern is the rise for the third year running of casualties among cyclists. These deaths and injuries have risen by 6% since 2007. At the same time, estimated cycling levels have risen by 17%. Perhaps we are now beginning to see the impact of “safety in numbers”. The policy objective at which to aim must be to get more people cycling more safely.
“What these figures do now throw into question is the relevance of the forecasts contained in the DfT’s Strategic Framework for Road Safety. On current trends, we can achieve the central projection on deaths within two years. Even the forecast for 2030 of a reduction of 10% is easily within our grasp.
“Sweden has shown the rest of Europe that the Vision Zero approach, backed up by a commitment to systematic analysis of the right intervention, makes a real difference. Our government should aim not merely to emulate but to overtake Sweden, offering real leadership to the rest of the world in the UN Decade of Action. The last four years show that with commitment and leadership real progress can be made. Great Britain now has a real opportunity to lead the world. I urge the government to take it.”
EuroRAP and Euro NCAP call for improved signing and marking
EuroRAP and Euro NCAP are calling for improved signing and marking throughout Europe, to ensure that vehicle technologies reach their full potential. They warn that technologies which read the road ahead will be hindered by faded road markings and obscured signs.
Passenger Focus’ National Passenger Survey Published
The National Passenger Survey (NPS) provides a network-wide picture of customers’ satisfaction with rail travel.
5th Road Safety PIN Report by ETSC
The European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) has published the 5th Road Safety PIN report, which provides an overview of European countries’ performance in three areas of road
safety.
New Law for Uninsured Vehicles
Under the new Continuous Insurance Enforcement law it’s an offence to be the keeper of an uninsured vehicle, rather than just to drive when uninsured.
National Travel Survey Consultation
The Department for Transport has launched a public consultation on the future design of the National Travel Survey.
New government guidance on 20mph
As part of the Traffic Signs Policy Review, Norman Baker has announced new guidance for local authorities wanting to use 20mph speed limits. Changes include expanding the list of traffic calming measures permitted.
ORR publishes Annual Report
ORR’s Annual Report and Accounts 2010-2011 details the rail regulator’s key activities and achievements towards making the rail sector more efficient; making the rail sector safer; holding Network Rail to account, and focusing on passengers and rail customers.
RESEARCH
Seamless Journeys From Door to Door
Campaign for Better Transport has published a new report, Seamless Journeys from Door to Door. It explores how public transport could achieve the same level of convenience as cars.  It concludes that information, interchanges (including safe routes for pedestrians and cyclists to stations and stops), connections and ticketing all need to improve.
Investment in the Walking Environment
Living Streets has published a new report, bringing together and evaluating the multiple health, economic, social and environmental benefits of investment in walking friendly public spaces.
Researched by a multi-disciplinary team of experts from the University of the West of England and Cavill Associates, the report draws on inspiring case studies of schemes which have resulted in safer and more attractive public places in neighbourhoods and city centres in the UK and elsewhere.
Pilot Lifestyle Research
The University of Leicester has published a report entitled the Pilot Lifestyle by Dr Simon Bennett. The report, sponsored by BALPA, gives pilots a voice in the debate about fatigue and lifestyle both of which factors may affect accident risk. It builds on a presentation given to PACTS by Dr Bennett into the Colgan Air crash in America. The report is available for purchase via the link.
INTERNATIONAL RESEARCH UN Decade of Action for Road Safety
As well as encouraging and supporting the sharing of Britain’s expertise and knowledge, PACTS is committed to using the Decade of Action as an opportunity to build on existing European and international contacts and learn from experience from outside the UK. Therefore each month a publication from a different country will be featured on the Decade of Action page on the PACTS website (http://bit.ly/jxO43x).
In recognition of Sweden and Lithuania winning the ETSC (European Transport Safety Council) PIN awards this year, these two countries will feature throughout July. The following links illustrate activities in road safety in each country.
The Swedish Transport Administration, Trafikverket, has published a factsheet on ISA. Speed is one of the most important factors in deciding the seriousness of an accident. But there now are effective tools to help drivers keep to the speed limit. One of these is ISA, which stands for ”Intelligent Speed Adaptation”.
The Ministry of Transport and Communications in Lithuania has invited schools to sign up for the European Road Safety Charter. The Lithuanian Road Administration website has a mapping feature, where visitors to the site can get information on traffic volume and accident rates for ‘black spots’.
STATISTICS
Rail Safety Performance – April 2011
The Rail Safety and Standards Board has published the following reports:
The Quarter 4 SPAD Cat A and TPWS Report for 2010/11
The Quarter 4 SPAD Cat A and TPWS Report for 2010/11 (overview)
The monthly SPAD Cat A and TPWS Report for May 201
All current safety performance reports can be found on the RSSB website.
Provisional Reported Road Casualties in Great Britain 2010
The Department for Transport has published the provisional figures for Reported Road Casualties 2010.
PARLIAMENT
ACTS AND BILLS
Police Reform and Social Responsibility Bill
Date: June 17, 2011
Debated in the House of Lords on Thursday 16th June
Amendments tabled on lowering the legal drink drive limit (not moved).
Drugs (Roadside Testing) Bill
Date: June 13, 2011
This Private Member’s Bill sponsored by Mr Christopher Chope had its Second reading on the 10th June but was withdrawn. Read the debate at the link above.
DEBATES
Dangerous Driving Offences (Sentences)
Date: June 22, 2011
Karl Turner (Kingston upon Hull East) (Lab)
Eyesight Tests (Drivers)
Date: June 15, 2011
Meg Munn (Sheffield, Heeley) (Lab/Co-op)
PARLIAMENTARY QUESTIONS
“Parliamentary questions are tools that can be used by Members of Parliament to seek information or to press for action. They oblige Ministers to explain and defend the work, policy decisions and actions of their Departments.”
All transport safety parliamentary questions and PACTS comments can be viewed at http://bit.ly/fa9ZQL
This question was asked on week beginning 7th June:
Level Crossings: Accidents
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many fatalities there have been on level crossings in the last five years. [55321]
 
Mrs Villiers: There have been 47 fatalities at level crossings in the last five years.
The latest data on annual level crossing fatalities can be found at:
http://www.rssb.co.uk/SiteCollectionDocuments/pdf/reports/Monthly%20Summary%20of%20Safety%20Performance% 20March%202011.pdf
PACTS comments:  Network Rail has reported an increase in pedestrians and motorists taking risks at level crossings, with near-misses with trains increasing by 15% between 2009 and 2010. This behaviour is both illegal and dangerous. Read more at http://bit.ly/kyjrHz
Keep up to date on transport safety news on Twitter: http://twitter.com/pacts 
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