Good traffic safety is of course an essential precondition for any location development. This can include the question of whether the 'new traffic' can be handled safely and can use the existing infrastructure, as well as the question of whether the design of new roads or the reconstruction of existing roads is safe.
Traffic safety of existing infrastructure
For existing infrastructure, traffic safety is often about testing against guidelines and standards. For this, we often use specially developed software such as 'the Road Scan'. The Roadscan contains tools for assessing changes in the relation between form, function and use of roads. A human factors approach can also be applied by our behavioural psychologists or traffic safety experts. With these tools, we map out whether guidelines are applied correctly and answer important questions. Are there environmental factors that contribute to undesirable behaviour? Are there any environmental factors missing that could prevent undesirable behaviour or mitigate the consequences of undesirable behaviour? In doing so, we also take account of special circumstances on the road, because it is precisely then that the risk of errors increases. We therefore also assess situations with increased task demands, such as at night, in bad weather or with low sunlight, and for road users with reduced task demands, such as fatigue, reduced orientation, substance use or recklessness.
Traffic safety of new infrastructure
We design new infrastructure that is not yet available in accordance with applicable standards and guidelines, and with specific attention to traffic safety. We also carry out road safety audits. An audit is a standardised method of arriving at an independent opinion on the consequences of an infrastructural design for traffic safety, before implementation begins. The design is tested on the expected road safety effects by an independent expert. Unfortunately, an audit is not obligatory in the Netherlands. Therefore, it is up to the road authority whether or not an audit is carried out for a project.
How we work
We carry out road safety audits with certified road safety auditors. An auditor acts as an independent party, who has not been involved in the design of the project in question before. A road safety audit can also take place on a 'collegiate basis'. This means that we carry out the test from within our own organisation, but even then independence goes without saying. This approach has the advantage that the threshold for carrying out an inspection is lower, for example because fewer costs have to be incurred.