Defining the Public Support: What Can Determine Acceptability of Road Safety Measures by a General Public?



Defining the Public Support: What Can Determine Acceptability of Road Safety Measures by a General Public?

Authors

Sven Vlassenroot, IMOB-Hasselt University and IDM, Ghent University, BE; Tom Brijs, G Wets,IMOB-Hasselt University, BE; Johan De Mol, IDM - Ghent University, BE

Description

Defining a carrying capacity can reveal relevant determinants why some road safety measures will or will not be accepted. This can be helpful in the creation of more realistic implementation scenarios.

Abstract

Increasing road safety is one of the main goals in traffic policy. Different kinds of measures can be taken to increase road safety. (Sustainable) road safety measures can be divided into infrastructure measures, which make road infrastructure and traffic situations more understandable and transparent for road users; vehicle technologies, like intelligent transport systems that increases the safety of drivers and passengers; information, education and enforcement of road users. Engineering, education and enforcement, also known as the 3E?s, are considered as an integrated approach of road safety policy. These measures consider mostly adaptation of or guidance in road user behaviour. However, traffic behavioural change implies acceptance of traffic policies and/or regulations.

Nowadays new technologies, like intelligent transport systems (ITS), could create alternative solutions for a better road safety. But how sure can we be that (new) traffic rules will be accepted by the people especially if technologies, like ITS, would be implemented? Or could there be a ?carrying capacity? by the general public on road safety policy?

Measuring the carrying capacity on road safety defines the degree of acceptance or intentions people have to adapt or not to adapt to the desired behaviour. This will indicate the exploration of the social and personal factors in relation to mobility and safety, which determine the level of acceptance on road safety measures.

The social factors indicate how mobility, especially road safety, is approached in society. For example, if road unsafety is recognized as a problem in society, acceptance of road safety measures will be more possible. The personal factors stand for the individuals? personality, attitudes and (actual) behaviour in relation to mobility.

In today?s applied traffic behaviour studies ? like studies on advanced driving assistance systems (ADAS) - this approach of acceptance is mostly not measured, or limited. Most of the existing studies only give some indications of the drivers? perception on their behaviour. If there are issues that can indicate acceptance, it is mostly measured in relation with potential benefits for the driver (e.g. will you use device X, if your insurance will be cheaper?).

Defining the actual carrying capacity can reveal relevant determinants why some road safety measures will or will not be accepted. This can be helpful in the creation of more realistic procedures for implementation of road safety measures.

Therefore in this paper, a theoretical framework will be described, based on sociological and psychological approaches and other (held) acceptance studies on road safety measures. This theoretical framework can be used as basis for a practical model towards measuring the carrying capacity.

Publisher

Association for European Transport