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Sidewalks, curbs and traffic signals in Maryland, United States
Speed limits in different areas, unusually with only a "recommended" limit (130 km/h) for the Autobahn Road traffic safety refers to methods and measures for reducing the risk of a person using the road network being killed or seriously injured. The users of a road include pedestrians, cyclists, motorists, their passengers, and passengers of on-road public transport, mainly buses and trams. Best-practice road safety strategies focus upon the prevention of serious injury and death crashes in spite of human fallibility (which is contrasted with the old road safety paradigm of simply reducing crashes assuming road user compliance with traffic regulations). Safe road design is now about providing a road environment which ensures vehicle speeds will be within the human tolerances for serious injury and death wherever conflict points exist. The basic strategy of a Safe System approach is to ensure that in the event of a crash, the impact energies remain below the threshold likely to produce either death or serious injury. This threshold will vary from crash scenario to crash scenario, depending upon the level of protection offered to the road users involved. For example, the chances of survival for an unprotected pedestrian hit by a vehicle diminish rapidly at speeds greater than 30 km/h, whereas for a properly restrained motor vehicle occupant the critical impact speed is 50 km/h (for side impact crashes) and 70 km/h (for head-on crashes). —International Transport Forum, Towards Zero, Ambitious Road Safety Targets and the Safe System Approach, Executive Summary page 19 As sustainable solutions for all classes of road have not been identified, particularly lowly trafficked rural and remote roads, a hierarchy of control should be applied, similar to best practice Occupational Safety and Health. At the highest level is sustainable prevention of serious injury and death crashes, with sustainable requiring all key result areas to be considered. At the second level is real time risk reduction, which involves providing users at severe risk with a specific warning to enable them to take mitigating action. The third level is about reducing the crash risk which involves applying the road design standards and guidelines (such as from AASHTO), improving driver behaviour and enforcement. Contents * 1 Background * 1.1 Built-up areas * 1.1.1 Turning across traffic * 1.1.2 Designing for pedestrians and cyclists * 1.1.3 Shared space * 1.2 Non built-up areas * 1.3 Major highways * 2 Vehicle safety * 2.1 Buses and coaches * 2.2 Cars * 2.3 Motorbikes * 2.4 Trucks * 3 Regulation of road users * 3.1 Motor vehicle users * 3.2 Pedal bicycle users * 3.3 Pedestrians * 4 Information campaigns * 5 Statistics * 5.1 Rating roads for safety * 5.2 KSI by country * 6 Advocacy groups * 7 Criticisms * 8 See also * 9 References * 9.1 Notes * 9.2 Sources * 10 External links| Background
Guardrails save a vehicle from a long fall c. 1920.
Road traffic crashes are one of the world’s largest public health and injury prevention problems. The problem is all the more acute because the victims are overwhelmingly healthy prior to their crashes. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than a million people are killed on the world’s roads each year. A report published by the WHO in 2004 estimated that some 1.2m people were killed and 50m injured in traffic collisions on the roads around the world each year and...