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Real world data collection and analysis to support passenger car safety

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posted on 2023-05-31, 14:23 authored by Ruth WelshRuth Welsh

Despite advances in road safety, there are still in the region of 1,400 people killed on the road each year in GB and almost 19,000 across Europe. As part of the initiatives directed at tackling road deaths, the research community aims to provide evidence in support of informed decision making on the part of stakeholders such as policy makers and vehicle manufacturers. A rich source of information, from which evidence can be gathered, is real world data in the form of both accident data and data obtained from driving studies. Exploitation of these sources form the basis of this thesis where the author considers two primary research questions:

RQ1: How can real world accident data contribute to improved passenger car safety?

RQ2: How can real world driving studies contribute to improved passenger car safety?

The 10 publications presented demonstrate how the author has addressed these research questions. They illustrate firstly the author’s research contribution, using real world accident data, to the evolution and impact assessment of passenger car safety testing programmes along with the development of Advanced Driver Assistance Systems (ADAS). They then discuss methodological aspects related to driving studies and how such studies can be used to assess the impact of ADAS.

It is concluded that real world evidence, from what can be considered a living laboratory, provides an extremely valuable resource for monitoring passenger car safety, assessing the effectiveness of interventions to improve safety and supporting legislative development. There is still a significant role for both types of data as these will provide the ground-truth, complimenting validation and verification taking place in the simulated environment. 



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Loughborough University

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© Ruth Helen Welsh

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A Doctoral Thesis. Submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the award of the degree of Doctor of Philosophy of Loughborough University. This is a Ph.D. by publication.


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Andrew Morris ; Tracy Ross

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  • PhD

Qualification level

  • Doctoral

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