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Paper 25th May 2004 - LGRAS(04)6

LGRAS (04) 6 - SCOTTISH EXECUTIVE ROAD SAFETY RESEARCH PROJECTS

1 Introduction

1.1 This paper reports on:

a) Two current projects that may be of interest to Members of the Group

b) Current projects under the 2003/4 research programme

c) Forthcoming projects under the 2004/5 research programme

1.2 Further information about these projects may be obtained from:

Tom Lamplugh

Social Research

Scottish Executive

Area 2C (Dockside)

Victoria Quay

Edinburgh EH6 6QQ

Tel: 0131 244 0377

Email: tom.lamplugh@scotland.gsi.gov.uk

1.3 This paper is primarily for information. Members of the group are, of course, welcome to comment on, or ask questions about, any of the projects mentioned here.

2. Projects which may be of particular interest to members Motorcycling Accidents in Scotland

Within Scotland there has been an increase in the total number of motorcyclist casualties since 1996. In 2002 a total of 1,164 motorcyclists were injured in road accidents, representing 6% of all casualties. Of these, 457 were either fatally or seriously injured, of whom 46 died. Although the number of motorcyclist casualties in 2002 was 13 fewer than in the previous year, it was 314 more than in 1996 (of recent years, the one with the lowest number).

Increasing numbers of people are using motorcycles for travel and recreation. Motorcyclists are several times more likely than car drivers to be killed or seriously injured in road accidents.

In order to reduce the number of road accidents involving motorcycles information about the circumstances surrounding motorcycle accidents in Scotland needs to be analysed.

The overall aim of this research is to investigate the circumstances surrounding motorcycle accidents in Scotland.

The objectives of this research are to:

  • Provide an in-depth statistical analysis of motorcycle accidents in Scotland over the past 10 years.
  • To investigate the circumstances surrounding serious and fatal motorcycle accidents in Scotland as recorded in qualitative police records over the past 3 years.
  • To highlight behaviours or circumstances that increase the risk of accidents occurring
  • To provide recommendations made in relation to SRSC or police activity on measures that could be taken to reduce the amount and severity of motorcycle casualties in Scotland

A database containing road accident statistics dating back over the past 10 years has been made available to the successful contractor. These statistics will be analysed to track trends in motorcycle accidents over the past 10 years. Analysis will take into account national data on motorcycle usage.

In addition a qualitative analysis of free text statements recorded by the police will be carried out for a sample of serious and fatal motorcycle accidents in Scotland over the past three years. Access to these comments will be negotiated with the relevant police forces by the contractor.

Deer Related Road Accidents

At present there is no system for central collection of data on road traffic accidents involving deer in the UK. However, data from other countries in Europe (and North America) show that the number of deer related RTAs has increased significantly in recent decades.

The overall aim of this research is to set up a stratified nation-wide monitoring study to record deer RTAs using a standardised recording form over an initial two or three year period (c. 2003/2005).

The objectives of this study are:

  • To provide directly comparable data on the level of deer related RTAs in differing regions and land-type classes within England, Wales and Scotland. This would be done by collection of standardised records of accidents via a number of nationally distributed organisations such as the Police, RSPCA/ SSPCA, County Councils' Roads Departments, and any Motor Insurance Companies willing to join this pilot scheme.
  • To develop a national data-base of deer RTA records, which can be interrogated to provide information on the factors associated with increased frequency/risk of accident in differing areas in relation to road types, deer species, traffic volume, presence/absence of differing types of mitigation and other influencing factors (daylight, time of day, roadside habitats, fencing, signs, type of vehicle etc.). This database would incorporate records from County Councils, Police Forces and Motor Insurers as above, but could also embrace records from deer management and other stalker groups, welfare organisations, and individual members of the public etc..
  • To increase public awareness of wildlife accidents and how to avoid them.
  • To act as a pilot and evaluation for a longer-term deer RTA monitoring program, and its possible extension to encompass other major wildlife species.

Collection of data will be targeted to provide a number of independent major data-sets, with each based at a county or regional level, to ensure proper stratified coverage of all areas of the country. Availability of a number of independent data-sets will also help to cross-verify regional estimates or predictions based on different sources.

Within each region, data will be collected from Police, County/Regional Councils, Road maintenance Departments/contractors, local RSPCA/SSPCA Offices etc. In Scotland, where there is already a good network of Deer Management Groups, individual DMGs will also be approached to provide data; elsewhere within the UK attempts will be made to recruit a comparable sample of individual stalkers, wildlife rangers (from e.g. Forestry Commission and Private Forestry Companies), or other registered people who are called out by the Police or RSPCA in cases of wildlife accidents.

The possibility of amending the STATS19 form (used for human-injury RTAs) to enable future recording by species where animals are involved will be investigated with Highways Agency, to inform possible proposals for changes when the STATS19 is next reviewed. Additionally, similar improvements to records of all RTA insurance claims will be discussed with the Motor Insurers willing to contribute to the project.

A central aspect of the study would be the establishment of a well publicised data collection point, supported by appropriate Web-page and Email access, to allow easy data submission and downloading of standard accident record forms. An Internet based system would help to minimise the work involved to submit records and hence encourage organisations and individuals to submit their records promptly as accidents occur. This would also avoid the costs associated with large scale mail-shots. The web page would also allow private individuals to submit records by completing the on-line accident form, or to print it off for later submission by post. Supplies of postcard versions of the record form may also be distributed to other data sources identified. In addition to direct approaches to a core of data sources, the study, its web site and contact phone number for request of record forms would be widely publicised in relevant regular membership magazines of participating organisations (e.g. British Deer Society, BASC, RSPCA, SSPCA, AA , RAC, and others), along with links to and from their own web sites. 3. Current Road Safety Research Projects

2003/4 Research Programme
TitleAim

Use of STATS 19 data

Estimated Date of Completion

Child Pedestrian Training Evaluation

To evaluate the Child Pedestrian Training scheme

Comparisons between pilot and control group in relation to road accidents

Summer 2006

Deer Related Road Accidents

To contribute to databases being set up by the Highways Agency on number and types of road accidents involving deer.

Some use of STATS 19 data, particularly in relation to 'Carriageway Hazards'

Summer 2005

Extent and Severity of Cycling Accidents

The main aim of the research is to establish the extent of cycle accidents both on and off roads in a selected case study area in Scotland - see paper LGRAS (03) 3

To compare hospital accident and emergency statistics on cycle casualties with STATS 19 information

Spring 2005

Good Practice in Developing an Inter-Agency Approach to Road Safety

To develop guidance on how best to approach road safety in regeneration areas using an inter-agency, community based approach

No use of STATS 19 data

Summer 2004

Parental Attitudes to Road Safety Education

To establish the attitudes of parents of 5 to 18 year olds to road safety education

Limited use of STATS 19 data in establishing sample group and designing questionnaire

Summer 2004

Evaluation of the 2003 Drink Drive Festive Campaign

To evaluate the 2003 Festive Drink Drive Campaign

No use of STATS 19 data

Summer 2004

Motorcycle Accidents in Scotland

To investigate the circumstances surrounding motorcycle accidents in Scotland.

Analysis of motorcycle accidents recorded in STATS 19 data over the past 10 years.

Summer 2004

Evaluation of Home Zones in Scotland

To evaluate four Home Zone case studies in Scotland

No use of STATS 19 data

2006/7


4. Forthcoming Road Safety Projects in the 2004/5 Research Programme

2004/5 Research Programme
TitleAim

Use of STATS 19 data

Estimated Date of Completion

Improving Road Safety for children with disabilities

To explore the road safety requirements of children/ young people with special educational needs and to make recommendations on how their road safety needs might be more effectively met

No use of STATS 19 data

2005

Good Practice in reducing serious/ fatal accidents in LA's

To highlight good practice in the administration of road safety within local authorities and to identify transferable lessons that can be applied across Scotland

STATS 19 data will be used, in part, to identify examples of good practice

2005

Risk assessment and risk taking amongst motorcyclists

To investigate risk assessment and risk taking amongst different groups of motorcyclist

This research will follow on from the earlier 'Motorcycle Accidents in Scotland' research.

2005

Rural Roads Literature Review

To collate information relating to road accidents on rural roads, suggest how it may be applied to Scotland and provide recommendations to the SRSC

No use of STATS 19 data

2005

Recreational Drugs and Driving

To investigate the prevalence of driving under the influence of illegal recreational drugs in Scotland and to explore the social context in which it takes place

No use of STATS 19 data

2005/6