The Challenge

Traditionally, investment in road safety infrastructure in Australia and New Zealand has taken a bottom-up approach by targeting locations with an established safety problem. While this approach has served both countries well, it does not fully embrace the Safe System philosophy on which each country’s road safety strategies are based. The ability to achieve safety benefits using this approach becomes increasingly difficult over time. 

With this concern in mind, Austroads engaged Abley to develop best practice recommendations for the development of Road Safety Infrastructure Programs (RSIPs). 

The Solution

The research involved consulting with state-level representatives across Australia and New Zealand to understand how each jurisdiction currently develops and delivers RSIPs, and to understand the strengths and weaknesses in their approaches. A literature review of best practice locally and internationally was also undertaken. 

Two stakeholder workshops were held to identify and refine a set of best practice principles for RSIP development and delivery.  

The Outcome

The output of this project is Austroads report AP-R562-18 “Best Practice in Road Safety Infrastructure Programs”. A webinar was also delivered, targeting industry practitioners. Thirty-four best practice principles were identified in this report across six stages of RSIP development: 

  1. Strategic direction 
  2. Risk identification 
  3. Countermeasure identification and development 
  4. Program development and approval 
  5. Project Design and Delivery 
  6. Monitoring and Evaluation 

Jurisdictions across Australia and New Zealand are implementing many initiatives that exemplify best practice in RSIP principles development, and several of these are presented as case studies in the report. 

When implemented by road controlling authorities, the best practice principles will effectively contribute towards a safer transport system with fewer fatalities and serious injuries.