Transport safety is not equally distributed across Europe. There exists a so-called “North-South-Divide” in European transport safety. While Northern European countries have developed and implemented plans and policies that have significantly improved road safety, the South of Europe generally lies below an EU-average.
However, there is no reason why such an unbalanced transport safety topography cannot be re-balanced by ways of appropriate policy-making. Experts from across Europe agree that safety in these countries is not impossible, but rather a question of cultivating that which has fallen dry.
It is against this background that the ETSC-project unfolded. The overall aim was to contribute to a long-lasting improvement of transport safety in the “SEC-Belt”, i. e. the Southern, Eastern and Central European countries. Hence, this project sought to translate a European safety vision into practical measures to improve the safety of transport users within the SEC-Belt Countries. The project raised awareness for the introduction of measures within six priority areas: user behaviour, vehicle technology, road infrastructure, road technology, information and databases, evaluation of national road safety policies.
The project comprised 3 phases and lasted almost 3 years, from January 2004 to October 2006.
Phase I (Identifying Risks & Opportunities) addressed safety practitioners and road users in the SEC-Belt countries. It dealt with the three classical activity areas of transport safety policies: the vehicles, the users and the roads.
Phase II (Evaluating Data & Policies) addressed international safety experts. It focused on overarching transport safety issues such as the evaluation of data and policies.
Phase III (Promoting Practice & Behaviour) addressed local, national and European policy-makers. It promoted best transport safety practice and behaviour in the SEC-Belt countries over a period of three years.