Road Safety Manual
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6.8 Meeting Targets

Establishing a road safety target is a major opportunity to involve and inform the community about the road safety risks which exist in the community, the measures available to reduce the risks and to actively and openly seek the support for improved performance.

It is also important that political support for a target is matched not only by commitment to regulation and legislation, but also by a commitment to funding, with a long-term vision. The economic costs of injury prevention strategies can be set against government savings in terms of reduced levels of health and welfare expenditure. This is a particularly important advocacy tool for use with finance ministries, which in many countries play a decisive role in determining overall government expenditure priorities.

Wherever possible ‘early wins’ should be identified and used to reinforce political support for the overall target and associated strategy. This may involve setting targets or adopting measures that are less demanding in the early phase of implementation, but which will result in encouragement to move forward more aggressively at a later stage. Using evidence to report and publicise early successes gives confidence to the strategy and will build further support within government.

Politicians play a critical role in responding to evidence-based advice about potential policy changes and options for management of externalities (other non-road-safety impacts of proposed road safety changes). They need to be adequately supported to be prepared to provide leadership in implementing beneficial road safety change.

Pathway to Effective Road Safety Targets, Investment Strategies, Plans and Projects

Getting started

  • LMICs should commission an expert road safety management capacity review, adopt the Safe System goal and approach, identify the country’s road safety risks and then develop, fund and prepare a demonstration project involving all agencies. It should include a multi-sectoral treatment for a substantial higher risk corridor or urban area plus selected national policy reviews. This should form the LMIC investment plan for the establishment phase.
  • The planned demonstration project should treat a high-risk corridor or extensive urban area with a complete range of interventions across the road safety agencies, identify selected policy areas for review (for example driver licence testing requirements, vehicle safety standards), establish project management arrangements and prepare for monitoring and measuring of agreed intermediate outcome safety measures (such as mean speeds, seatbelt and helmet wearing rates and alcohol impairment rates in fatal and serious crashes on the corridor) to enable progress being achieved with the demonstration project to be identified on an ongoing basis.
  • Project management for the demonstration project is to include identification of an agreed lead agency to support coordination and decision-making activities within a newly established project working group of agencies. The working group will report to a senior level steering committee of agencies.
  • Implement a crash data system as a priority.

Making progress

  • Complete implementation of the demonstration project.
  • Progressively evaluate performance by measuring and reporting intermediate outcomes and final outcomes to the public.
  • Build knowledge and capability through these and other means, such as exchanges, information sharing with other jurisdictions, fact-finding missions, and international literature reviews to implement effective interventions.
  • Develop legislation and systems and promote senior government executive and public awareness of the need for their commitment to road safety investment.
  • Achieve adequate funding to progressively extend the demonstration project outcomes (suitably modified based on lessons learned) across the network.
  • Implement ongoing reforms of safety policies and institutional management arrangements, including adoption of a national lead agency, its agreed role and responsibilities and agency coordination and support.

Consolidating activity

  • Disseminate crash data and other safety performance data from the national crash analysis system.
  • Set medium-term targets for country outcomes, country intermediate outcomes and outputs by organisations and develop and implement growth investment (strategy and action) plans to achieve these targets. HICs are likely to be carrying out these tasks as an immediate priority.
  • Determine whether top down or bottom up target-setting is to be used and look to the targets being adopted by leading countries for guidance.
  • Implement comprehensive multi-sectoral measures across the total network.
  • Manage, monitor and report on road safety performance across the network.
  • In the longer-term consolidation investment phase, support regions and local governments to develop longer-term targets, strategies/action plans and safety performance monitoring.


Reference sources

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