Road safety impact assessments are requested in general, and the directive on road infrastructure safety management makes them compulsory for Member States of the European Union. However, there is no widely used, science-based safety evaluation tool available. We demonstrate a safety evaluation tool called TARVA. It uses EB safety predictions as the basis for selecting locations for implementing road-safety improvements and provides estimates of safety benefits of selected improvements. Comparing different road accident prediction methods, we demonstrate that the most accurate estimates are produced by EB models, followed by simple accident prediction models, the same average number of accidents for every entity and accident record only. Consequently, advanced model-based estimates should be used. Furthermore, we demonstrate regional comparisons that benefit substantially from such tools. Comparisons between districts have revealed significant differences. However, comparisons like these produce useful improvement ideas only after taking into account the differences in road characteristics between areas. Estimates on crash modification factors can be transferred from other countries but their benefit is greatly limited if the number of target accidents is not properly predicted. Our experience suggests that making predictions and evaluations using the same principle and tools will remarkably improve the quality and comparability of safety estimations.
- traffic safety