RoSPA has published new guidance for road safety and public health professionals to help them work together to promote opportunities for walking and cycling.
The new report, Road Safety and Public Health, says that a joined-up approach between public health and transport professionals can have a positive impact on issues such as heart disease, mental health and air pollution, as well as preventing injuries.
The report concludes that road safety fits best with public health when both are seen together as ‘healthy transport’. It also suggests that shared agendas between road safety and public health teams need to be identified, and that the same issues underpin poor health and safety. As an example, it points out that greater volumes of traffic lead to an increase in air pollution which in turn has a detrimental impact on people’s quality of life.
The report also includes a number of case studies where road safety and public health teams have successfully worked together.
Duncan Vernon, road safety manager at RoSPA and author of the report, said: “Transport has a big impact on health, and so it is important that we understand how road safety activities fit into this.
“Many actions to improve road safety will also have a positive effect on other areas of health and we need to make sure that we’re getting this right.
“Integrated or co-ordinated efforts that involve road safety professionals, highways departments and public health teams are essential, especially where the joint working is supported by local strategies that make these links clear and use the best information and data. This will help to make transport both safer and healthier.”