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European Road Safety Inspection

European Union
Complete with results
Geo-spatial type
Project Acronym
STRIA Roadmaps
Infrastructure (INF)
Transport mode
Road icon
Transport policies
Transport sectors
Passenger transport,
Freight transport


Background & Policy context

Road transportation in Europe is a high value sector area, having a turn-over of almost €2.5 trillion in 2006, with an estimated 293 million vehicles travelling on over 5 million kilometres of road-network. In the same year, just under 43,000 people were killed on European roads. In 2001, the European Commission drafted an objective to reduce the present number of deaths by half to 25,000 by 2010. Rural roads constitute a large percentage of the total 5 million kilometres of route network throughout Europe. The European Commission has promoted a series of initiatives, research programmes as well as directives to help improve safety along European route networks. The road infrastructure directive is due to be implemented across Europe in December 2010. One of the four corner-stones of this directive revolves around road safety inspection (RSI). Road safety inspection procedures along rural road corridors vary across Europe.


The motivation for this European Road Safety Inspection (EuRSI) research proposal is to address some of short-comings in current rural-road safety inspection procedures, where the vast majority of accidents occur. These include research and development of latest state-of-the-art mobile route-corridor mapping technologies to highlight hazards and replace existing manual inspection methods. A second area deals with exploring novel risk assessment approaches to highlighting rural-road sections that may require immediate safety intervention following an RSI. A third area tackles trans-national standardisation issues through testing and independent validation of the system in four separate Member States.


Parent Programmes
Type of funding
Public (EU)
Other Programme


Road user risk prevails from the start of any journey right through to the final destination. Static road risk factors can be continuous such as pavement surface condition or discrete such as road side point hazards. Risk is a relative term since it depends on the interaction of a number of static and dynamic variables. The relationships between risk factors are complex and it is difficult to compute their potential or actual contribution to an accident event. In the first instance, a systematic approach is required to highlight and explain potential risk along rural roads in an operational environment.

This study acknowledges that the task of identifying and measuring risk is non-trivial, involving a complex series of interactions centred around driver, vehicle and road environment. Road Safety Inspection is concerned, initially, with monitoring the existing physical road environment and in this study is further limited to examining certain static risk factors such as road geometry, surface condition and hazards along rural road networks.

RSI is meant to be an efficient, useful, rapid, inspection tool that should be easy to implement and operate in a timely fashion. EuRSI is tasked with identifying sections of road that pose risk and providing a system that enables the user to understand the factors. A novel framework incorporating three levels of processing is proposed where accident databases, static road factors and velocity has potential to be used in helping highlight sections of (perceived) risk. These results can be compared with a record of existing safety interventions in the form of protection mechanisms, markings and signage.

The emphasis in this project is devising a methodology that highlights risk, allows the user to query why the location was highlighted, enables some level of comparison of risk locations along the network, and can be deployed in an operational environment.


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


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