Critical accident scenarios for cyclists and how they can be addressed through ITS solutions

It is recognised that ITS applications have been relatively successful in improving road safety primarily through technology applications the vehicle and infrastructure. However, Vulnerable Road Users (VRUs) have not received as much benefit as other road users. The EC-funded VRUITS project places the VRU road user at the centre, assesses the impact of current and upcoming ITS applications on the safety and mobility of VRUs, identifies how the usability and efficiency of ITS applications can be improved and recommends which actions have to be taken at a policy level to improve ITS safety and mobility. A major focus of the VRUITS project involves the safety of cyclists within the EU as a target VRU group. To provide the evidence-base for ITS applications, data were analysed to determine critical scenarios for cyclists and these data included national data in Spain, Austria, Finland, Sweden and the United Kingdom. This analysis was matched to analysis of the European CARE data to determine the consistency between the national and European databases. The main findings from the data analysis are as follows; • The majority of cycling accidents in the accident analysis were found to occur at junctions/intersections. • One of the most common scenarios involved vehicles pulling out into the path of the oncoming cyclist at an intersection • CARE data suggests that the most common scenario involves both cyclist and vehicle heading in the same direction but the vehicle then turns into the cyclist’s path • Overall, males are over-represented in the data. • The majority of the accidents occur in fine dry weather during daylight hours • The majority occur in urban areas at relatively on roads with relatively low speed limits Data from this phase of the VRUITS project will be used to determine the ITS solutions that are relevant to the scenarios determined through accident analysis. Subsequent phases of the project will look at the feasibility of implementation of theses countermeasures which is likely to include some pilot testing of specific applications.