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SUmmary and publication of best Practices in Road safety in the Eu MEmber States

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


Background & Policy context

In general, implementation of road safety measures is a highly complex process which bears a lot of opportunities and risks for all parties involved. These stakeholders may consider a lot of criteria for definition of their political position and their strategies. However, it can be supposed that any stakeholder getting active has a certain interest to solve a specific road safety problem and absolutely no interest in going wrong. These interests resulted in a strategy relatively new to the field of road safety: "Best Practice". In order to support this particular approach towards successful road safety work, the European Commission, DG Energy & Transport, has taken the initiative to support and fund a large cooperative exercise towards identification and dissemination of Best Practice solutions for road safety problems.


The goal of SUPREME is to collect, analyse, summarise and publish best practices in road safety in the Member States of the European Union as well as in Switzerland and Norway. The target audiences of the project are decision and policy makers at all levels, from European to local, as well as the scientific community and practitioners in the field. The aim is to provide user specific information on outstanding safety measures with a view to implementation in other countries or at the European level. Measures will be looked at from different perspectives: classes of road users concerned, scope of implementation and type of organisation implementing the measure.


Analysis, synthesis and further selection of collected data was carried out along 9 categories of measures, covering all areas of road safety work. A set of 8 criteria has been developed to assess the proposed measures. Thematic reports have given a detailed description of best available practices for each of these categories, featuring basic characteristics such as target groups, quantitative and qualitative goals, key issues, duration of implementation and effects, coverage, costs, actors involved and implementation procedures. These results have been given a second stage of feedback from the country experts and involvement of organisations at European and international level on order to identify key success factors and potential implementation barriers in other countries or at the European level. The results have been synthesized into 3 core products. The "Handbook for measures at the Country Level" addresses road safety measures, which can be implemented Member States' governments, by regional or local authorities. Measures more or exclusively suitable for implementation at supra-national level were summarised within the " Handbook for measures at The European Level".


Parent Programmes
Institution Type
Public institution
Institution Name
European Commission - Directorate-General for Energy and Transport (DGTREN)
Type of funding
Public (EU)


The selection process of SUPREME clearly showed that although road safety has become an important policy objective, still little is done in order to investigate the activities for their real impact. After data collection and data analysis, the consortium had to face the fact that the eight criteria proved to be quite restrictive and demanding. In order to cope with these circumstances some fine-tuning of the initial selection process was necessary – and a distinction between best, good and promising examples seemed to be necessary.

In order to be labelled as Best Practice, a measure should comply with most of SUPREME’s internal selection criteria. In particular its effectiveness in terms of expected reduction of road crashes, deaths and serious injuries should have been demonstrated in previous scientific evaluation work.

Good Practice measures: For some of the best practice candidates, evaluation to the level of reduction of crashes, deaths and/or injuries was difficult or even impossible to carry out. If such a measure was based on a sound theory and at least impact on risk determining factors was evident, it could qualify as good practice.

Promising Practices are mainly “new” measures that have not yet been subject to a full-fledged evaluation but, according to expert opinion, have a high potential of improving road safety. Some of the impact assessment studies were only based on small scale field trials or pilot studies. However, a sound scientific background was required in any case.

In the course of the comprehensive analysis and selection process, a total of 55 measures were identified for final publication, 24 of them as Best Practice, 21 as Good Practice and 10 as Promising Practice. In an internal survey, the county partners of the SUPREME consortium were asked whether each of the measures was implemented in their country in the same way, in a similar way or as a pilot. This information was computed in order to define a comparable quantitative parameter, structured by the 9 categories. 100% implementation would be, if every measure of one category would be implemented in all countries.

Some road safety areas, e.g. vehicle safety, are largely under the responsibility of the European Commission and other international bodies. However, as most areas remain within the responsibility of national governments, those areas are increasingly delegated to regional or local authorities. The Handbook for Measures at the Country Level (Part C of the Final Report) provides a basis of information and possible measures for national, regional and local policy makers and decision makers, for road safety practitioners, for interest groups, etc.; in short, for all those who are professionally involved in road safety work. It contains a large variety of practices of best, good and promising road safety measures from all parts of Europe. It is not a scientific report but a valuable pool of information. The Handbook describes Best Practice measures in the nine areas.

The Handbook demonstrates that road safety improvements can be achieved through implementation of relatively simple measures and examines successful experiences elsewhere in Europe. “Reinventing the wheel” and “trial and error approaches” to road safety can thus be largely avoided.

The Handbook for Measures at the European Level (Part D of the Final Report) focuses on measures which have little chance of being implemented at the country level, or even no possibility, if the topic is subject of European legislation. However, it is not only addressed to people having their desks in Brussels or Strasbourg. It might give valuable information to officials and politicians backing up the Member States representatives in the European Union boards and committees and support them with information.


Lead Organisation
EU Contribution
Partner Organisations
EU Contribution


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