The role public transport can play in Safer Journeys and, in particular, to advance the Safe System approach

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Subject Area

place - urban, place - australasia, mode - bus, mode - ferry, mode - rail, literature review - literature review, planning - safety/accidents


accident, bus, ferry, mode, multimodal, New Zealand, public transport (PT), risk, Safe Systems, Safer Journeys, safety, train, transport, travel


The key objectives of this research were to identify the contribution that urban public transport (PT), which is generally considered safer than travel by light motor vehicles, can make to the Safe System approach, and to develop an implementation plan for the insertion of PT as a safe mode into the Safer Journeys framework and action plans.

The work indicated that, as in New Zealand, the practice overseas was for road safety strategists not to attempt to influence modal split in the direction of safer PT modes, but rather to accept the levels of modal split resulting from government PT policies and then to ensure that the system which results is managed according to Safe System principles.

This would mean including in Safer Journeys PT-related injuries not at present covered in Safer Journeys actions. This would require no structural change, just a restatement of the reach of the strategy and the inclusion of some new areas of interest and action plans.

To achieve this, the whole journey rather than just the road phase needs consideration. Data on injury related to all aspects of the journey should be gathered and analysed; safety expertise can be positioned in organisational structures to influence how PT is operated, and tools to better monitor PT safety can be made available and used.


Permission to publish the abstract has been given by NZTA, copyright remains with them.