Road safety schemes recognised in CIHT awards
Two initiatives, to improve safety on the A9 in Scotland and through road works on the A1 in North Yorkshire, were among the winners at the 2015 CIHT Awards ceremony on 9 June.
An initiative to improve driver behaviour on the A9 trunk road, a 246-mile route which connects central Scotland and the Highlands, won the CIHT John Smart Road Safety Award.
The John Smart Road Safety Award is in recognition of the CIHT’s former director of technical affairs, who passed away suddenly in 2012. John Smart had a strong personal and professional commitment to improving road safety throughout his career.
The winner, the A9 Interim Plan developed by the A9 Safety Group, covers four key areas: communication - establishing a dedicated website; engineering - improvements to signing, lining and visibility; education – a campaign targeting overtaking and speed limits; and enforcement - introduction of an average speed camera system. The strategy also increased the speed limit for HGVs exceeding 7.5t.
As a result, speeding offences have been reduced by a factor of eight, overall speeding is down from one in three drivers to one in 20, and examples of excessive speeding (10mph+) are down by 97%.
The CIHT judges were “impressed with the scale of the measures, which combine a package of engineering, education and communications strategies, and enforcement to address a significant road safety problem on an extensive route”.
The CIHT Technological Application Award went to an initiative to improve large goods vehicle driver behaviour through roadworks on the A1 between Leeming and Barton, which carries 50-54,000 vehicles a day, with approximately one-quarter being heavy goods vehicles. The route has a poor accident record, and improvements have been on-going since March 2014 to upgrade into a dual three lane motorway, enabled with major traffic management over 22km.
The CIHT award went to contractors Carillion Morgan Sindall JV, North Yorkshire Police, Highways England, and supply chain partners Redspeed International who have developed a five point plan to create a cultural change in large goods vehicles (LGV) driver behaviour through the road works.
This initiative, which uses warnings and education followed by enforcement, has delivered an 85% reduction in lane two violations by LGVs which in turn will improve safety through the road works for both road users and workers.
The CIHT judges were impressed by how this “innovative application of technology had greatly improved the enforcement of lane restrictions for LGVs”, and said the project is “paving the way for better road works safety by pioneering the first project in the country to deliver lane weight restriction enforcement”.