Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


RANKERS — Result In Brief

Project ID: 1678
Funded under: FP6-SUSTDEV
Country: Belgium

Safer roads for Europe

Ranking for European road safety (Rankers) is an EU-funded project committed to saving lives by reducing the number of fatal accidents on our roads. The ground-breaking initiative identified hazardous stretches of road, before recommending the best and most cost-effective form of remedial action.
Safer roads for Europe
The Rankers project made a significant contribution to the emergence of a Europe-wide culture of safe road engineering. A road safety index (RSI) was developed for monitoring and assessing road safety together with a catalogue of remedial measures that were ranked according to their efficiency. The consortium also produced an interactive tool on the internet called the eBook that could be accessed by users and road authorities.

The project took an integrated approach by addressing driver behaviour, the vehicle's response and the road infrastructure. Together they comprised the 'three safety pillars', which demonstrate how the characteristics of the road can influence road safety. The insights gained enabled the development of safety measures that helped both in the prevention accidents and in the lessening of their effects.

Analysis was carried out into the human, vehicle and infrastructure aspects of road safety for selected stretches of road, taking into account environmental and traffic conditions. Results showed that factors pertaining to road infrastructure can provide scope for improvement with regard to reducing the risk of an accident. Therefore, researchers developed a measurable parameter for road infrastructure that could be used for inspecting and monitoring the safety of a particular stretch of highway.

Project partners produced a performance based ranking system for safety recommendations that enabled users to prioritise between different solutions. The system enabled road authorities to make better informed decisions and allocate road infrastructure investment more effectively.

Thanks to the work of the Rankers project scientifically based guidelines were developed to help improve and harmonise future EU standards, including new criteria for road signs and infrastructure. New areas of research were also identified including the need for more data about the performance of the same countermeasures in different accident scenarios. The effectiveness of new tools, including road safety inspections, should also be assessed in future research.

The Rankers project sought to develop roads that would not only lessen the effect of an accident but would help to stop it from occurring in the first place. By reducing the number of fatalities and injuries and developing safer roads, the consortium have helped improve the quality of life of EU citizens.

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Safety - Transport
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