John Smart

12.00 | 3 December 2012 | | 3 comments

John Smart, the well known and popular director of policy and technical affairs at the Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT), died suddenly in November at the age of 55 after a very short illness.

During his time at the Institution, John made a significant contribution leading on many influential projects. These included the establishment of the CIHT Awards and conference programme, a number of technical guidelines and documents including Manual for Streets, Road Safety Audit and Collision Prevention and Reduction and the submission of many consultation responses into Government.

John’s other responsibilities included managing CIHT’s technical boards and panels, promotion of CIHT and acting as a key liaison and technical spokesperson.

As an example of his commitment, John had also recently completed his professional reviewer training to enable him to continue to help guide the transportation professionals of tomorrow.

Prior to joining CIHT, John headed up the Safe Road Design team within the Safety, Standards and Research Division of the Highways Agency U.K. One of his main responsibilities was the development, implementation and management of the Agency’s road safety strategic plan. He was custodian of the Agency’s standards and advice notes that relate to motorway and trunk road geometric design. He was the Agency’s specialist for road safety and geometric layout. John retained an interest and personal commitment to improving road safety throughout his career.

His other responsibilities included managing a programme of research and development projects and providing technical support and expert advice to the Agency’s regional offices on matters relating to road design and road safety issues.

Before taking up his post in Safety Standards and Research, John spent eight years in project management with the Agency’s London regional office, overseeing the planning, preparation and construction of major infrastructure schemes on the motorway and trunk road network.

Prior to this, John worked for 12 years with the Greater London Council on the design and construction of civil engineering projects.

John was renowned for his knowledge and expertise in the transport sector and this was demonstrated by his commitment and dedication to many technical groups and organisations.

He was an international associate member of the Transport Research Board committee’s AHB65 – Operational Effects of Road Geometry & AFB10 – Geometric Design, an executive committee member of PACTS and honorary secretary of WRA – UK (PIARC national committee). He was also a member of the CIHT’s Road Safety, Urban Design and Procurement and Delivery Panels and secretary of the Learned Society Technical Strategy Board. Amongst other groups John had also been a past member of the EuroRAP technical committee and the SURVIVE executive steering group.

John was a chartered civil engineer with a degree in civil engineering a Fellow of the Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation, a member of the Institute of Civil Engineers and an Honorary Fellow of SoRSA.

Away from his work, John’s main passion was his family; he is survived by his wife Sharon and his two children Katy and Ben of whom he was immensely proud.

For all those who knew him, his other commitments were to his beloved Arsenal (a fervent fan!), photography and to his substantial and diverse music collection.

John will be sorely missed by all those who knew him, he was a committed, inspirational figure who was always available to help and guide others – a true professional.


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    Really sorry to hear this sad news, I enjoyed many a social evening and professional events with John. Condolences to all family friends.

    Bill Smith dbda
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    We are so very sorry to hear this tragic news; a consummate professional and a real gentleman. Our thoughts are with his family, many friends and colleagues at this time.

    Jan Deans CEO Dynamic (Good Egg Safety)
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    John was a great professional, and a very nice man, who was always friendly and willing to help others. He will be sadly missed by all who worked with him. Our thoughts are with his family at this very sad time.

    Alan Kennedy – Chairman Road Safety GB
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