Pan-European survey of road users’ attitudes published
Publication date: 20 June 2016
The results of a pan-European survey conducted by the ESRA project (European Survey of Road Users’ Safety Attitudes) were presented in Brussels on June 20. Using representative samples of the national adult populations in 17 European countries, the survey is meant to have a comparable set of data across countries. ESRA is due to repeat the survey periodically, to also determine if and how road users’ attitudes change over time. ESRA is led by the Belgian Road Safety Institute (IBSR) and is funded by the participating consortium partners themselves. It is considered the continuation of the previously EU-funded SARTRE projects.
Users were asked questions about their involvement in crashes, perception of risks, concern about road safety, self-declared (un)safe behaviour and attitudes, acceptability about unsafe behaviour of others, as well as the acceptability of police enforcement and various road safety measures. Thematic reports and country factsheets are available online: www.esranet.eu
Attitude questionnaires are important to ensure that authorities do not underestimate the need to build public acceptance alongside measures. They are a good indication of areas where further education and campaigns are needed. Finally, they are particularly important to identify those countries or areas where there is great variance between subjective perceptions of risk and the real level of risk.
Austria, Belgium, Italy, and Poland were cited as examples were the perception of risk among users is too low in relation to the countries’ exposure to risk, suggesting awareness raising efforts are necessary. Portugal, Greece and Ireland were cited as countries where exposure to risk is relatively high, but so is the perception of risk among users.