Memorandum by the Highways Agency (RTS
TRUNK ROAD SAFETY PLANSUPPORT TO 2010
CASUALTY REDUCTION TARGETS
In supporting the Government's Road Safety Strategy,
Tomorrow's RoadsSafer for Everyone, the Highways
Agency (HA) published Making the Network Safer, which outlines
how it intends to manage safety on the Trunk Road network and
deliver the 2010 casualty reduction targets set by government
for the Trunk Road (TR) network. To accompany this document detailed
safety management guidance has been issued to Agency staff and
This guidance explains the "best practice"
principles that are being commended for use on the HA's roads.
These principles can be defined in four discrete areas that form
an annual cyclic process:
accident data collection and analysis;
identification and prioritisation
of problem locations or routes;
design and implementation of a cost-effective
programme of safety schemes; and
monitoring of completed schemes and
remainder of the network.
Implementation of this management system is
ongoing and an improvement in how the HA manages and reports on
its safety work are continually being improved.
The use of different safety measures, such as
reduced speed limits, traffic calming etc to solve problems on
the TR network is dependent on the above process establishing
need and identifying the most suitable measures or combinations
of measures to deliver accident reduction. The design and implementation
of the safety schemes on the TR network form part of the Local
Network Management Scheme (LMNS) programme, which is a targeted
annual programme of works set to contribute to the delivery of
the casualty reduction targets along with other key performance
targets. This programme each year, on average, results in the
completion of around 200 safety schemes.
Progress on the use of certain types of measures
is listed below.
Traffic calming is the use of specific traffic
management measures in order to reduce and control vehicle speeds
to a level commensurate with the activities taking place along
that road, at the same time, encouraging appropriate driver behaviour
in adopting a smooth speed without excessive acceleration or deceleration.
Traffic calming measures may be considered at locations identified
as giving rise to significant concerns about road safety, vehicle
speed, effects of community severance, or improving the environment
for people local to the road.
Traffic calming has largely been used in urban
areas on roads with speed limits of 30mph or less. Measures are
available however, for higher speed roads, but as speeds increase
it becomes less safe to use physical measures and greater reliance
is placed on non-physical means. Non-physical measures are likely
to result in less significant reductions in speed unless they
can be accompanied by strict enforcement of speed limits. The
limited availability of police resources for the enforcement of
traffic regulations generally means that schemes need to be self-enforcing
(speed cameras) to achieve the required speed reductions. Application
of traffic calming measures at higher speed roads within the trunk
road system, particularly where they pass through rural settlements
can therefore still have a role to play and much work has been
done by central and local government on developing traffic calming
measures for use on rural roads.
Traffic Calming Interim Guidance Note, IAN 28/00
was prepared in early 2000 by the Highways Agency for use on trunk
roads. The document includes information on relevant legislation,
reference sources and a procedure for implementation of traffic
Further research on traffic calming (Assessment
of Traffic Calming using a Simulator, Self-Calming Roads and Trunk
Road Traffic Calming were carried out in order to update the interim
advice to incorporate it in the Design Manual For Roads and Bridges
(DMRB Volume 6: Section 3). The preparation of the Advice is now
in its final stages (draft submitted to the Technical Project
Board, it is anticipated that it will be completed and published
in early 2003). The document will provide advice on the use of
Traffic Calming measures on trunk roads and will illustrate "good
practice" over a comprehensive range of measures. It will
not however, be a design guide and designers are advised to refer
to appropriate Standards and legislation referenced in the document,
together with other guidance issued by DTLR and IHT.
The introduction of calming schemes on the Trunk
Road network is accident data lead, through the process mentioned
above, where it is identified that it is the appropriate measure
to resolve actual accident problems. A number of calming schemes
have been introduced in previous years; at least eight have been
completed as part of the 2000-01 LMNS programme.
To establish the extent and/or absence of NMU
crossing provision on the TR network the Agency designed a survey
to collect data on the current position and assist in improving
accessibility across the network. Instructions were issued by
HA in 2000 for maintaining Agents to undertake the work and report
back, so that the information can be used to feed into Routes
Management Studies and LMNS improvement programmes.
The crossings survey is now substantially complete
and the data is being collated. The next stage will be to co-ordinate
Area reviews with Managing Agents and user groups to develop a
programme of schemes.
The Safer Routes to School initiative is a DTLR
funded scheme in the main directed towards Local Authorities who
are responsible for the schools and delivery of road safety education
within their county, district or borough boundaries. Where routes
to schools are either alongside or cross trunk roads the HA works
in partnership with local authorities to support the SRS initiative.
HA guidance is about to be issued; school related
information has been loaded onto an internal graphical information
system (HAGIS). Funding is in place for a further education pilot
study to be implemented, but currently there are no new projects
30 MPH SPEED LIMITS
The Road Safety Strategy, Tomorrow's RoadsSafer
for Everyone suggests that one of the recommendations that
may come out of the Rural Road Hierarchy for Speed Management
review would be for 30mph to be the normal speed limit for villages.
Indeed the current draft progress report suggests for the Tier
1 roads, which will include all trunk roads, this would be an
Imposing reduced speed limits through villages
on the trunk road network is, as with other safety measures, data
lead and priority driven. If through the safety management process
outlined above, schemes are identified where a 30mph limit is
seen as the appropriate measure then it be considered and introduced,
often as part of a traffic-calming scheme.
A considerable number of villages on the trunk
road network now have lower speed limits, typically 30 or 40mph
imposed through the limits of the village. In most cases the limits
are supported with village gateways and other calming techniques.
These types of schemes have been a feature of the LMNS safety
programme for a number of years and will continue to play an important
role in future years.
27 May 2002