Publications & Working Groups

For specific themes or issues, as its own initiative or on demand, FERSI can install a dedicated working group. The output can be a scientific paper or report with the latest knowledge on a specific issue, a position paper on new developments and related research gaps, or an advise on current policy issue or research needs. Previous FERSI working groups dealt with a variety of topics including vulnerable road users, vehicle automation, serious injuries, road safety economics, road safety management, and safety performance indicators.

Currently, there is a working group active on smartphone distraction, led by BASt, Germany. The aim is to develop a joint scientifically valid research method for assessing the prevalence of different aspects of smartphone use of car drivers, cyclists and pedestrians in a variety of traffic circumstances.

FERSI publications
FERSI as an organisation or a group of FERSI members publish research reports, scientific papers, position papers and advises. At the basis of FERSI’s work is the 2014 position paper ‘Towards safer roads in Europe‘. This report describes the nine key challenges for road safety research for the next decade: Ageing society, Vulnerable road users, Cultural diversity, Vehicle automation and ITS, The burden of injuries, Safe road design, Educating & training road users, Behavioural change, and Road safety management. 

Column: To the core of road crash causes

In a new column, FERSI colleagues Jindřich Frič & Pavel Havránek from the Transport Research Centre, Czech Republic, point at the need of in-depth crash analyses including analyses of the involved vehicles and their damage as well as some recent Czech research projects in this area.

FERSI Column: Road Safety - Identifying the innovations that provide the best crash injury protection for all

In the new FERSI column Professor Astrid Linder (VTI) sets out the need to provide all car occupants with the best crash injury protection and not just the ‘50th percentile male’. Ideally, car safety assessments should account for sex, body height, weight, and age to ensure occupant protection for all.

FERSI column: What is the level of cyclist safety in the Danube Region?

FERSI column by Marko Ševrović & Anđelo Marunica (University of Zagreb, Faculty of Transport and Traffic Sciences). The column presents some results of the SABRINA project, expressing concern about the safety level of the cycling infrastructure in the Danube region.

Essential European road safety research lacking

In a position paper, FERSI expresses its concern that European road safety research is no longer delivering what it ought to, impeding the improvements needed to achieve the European ambitious road safety targets. The paper details how the structure of road safety research funding in Europe impacts the potential progress that can be made in European road safety ánd provides some suggestions for solutions.

Column: Is e-scooter sharing declining?

This 3rd column is written by Luca Persia, Director of the Research Centre for Transport and Logistics (CTL) of Sapienza University of Rome. It reflects on the rise and the current downsizing of e-scooters, and their pros and cons for urban mobility.

Extended summaries

On 6 and 7 October 2022 a FERSI conference took place in The Hague, the Netherlands, titled Implementing evidence-based road safety measures – Removing barriers and enhancing public support. The extended summaries of the keynotes and the oral and poster presentations are available here.

Column: Road safety must remain a priority for public authorities

The second FERSI column by Dominique Mignot, Université Gustave Eiffel and vice-president of FERSI, calls for continued attention for road safety despite the many other challenges that the world is facing.

Column: Bicycles are dangerous

The first FERSI column comes from FERSI President and SWOV’s Deputy Director Rob Eenink, titled Bicycles are dangerous.

FERSI supports Streets for Life #Love30

‘Streets for Life’ is the slogan of the 6th UN Global Traffic Safety Week (17 – 23 May 2021), calling for 30 km/h speed limits to be the norm for cities, towns and villages worldwide. FERSI supports this call, pointing at the importance of a low speed, in particular in urban environments with its many pedestrians and cyclists.

E-scooters in Europe: legal status, usage and safety - Results of a survey in FERSI countries (2020)

Based on the input from FERSI members, this FERSI paper presents the legal status, usage and safety of e-scooters in 18 European countries. E-scooters are allowed in most of these countries. However, their legal status differs, e.g. related to the position on the road, the maximum speed, and helmet obligation. Many countries are working on more targeted or more elaborate legislation. The objective information about numbers, safety, users and their behaviour is scarce.

Safety through automation? Ensuring that automated and connected driving contribute to a safer transportation system (2020)

This paper was prepared for the (cancelled) TRA2020 conference. It discusses the main outcomes of report on automated driving (AD) from a road safety point of view, prepared by a FERSI Working Group. The paper presents the ten principles to be fulfilled in order to optimise the safety effects of AD as well as a number of recommended actions.

Towards an evidence-based national road safety programme – a two-stage approach (2020)

This FERSI position paper intends to offer guidance to Member States on developing a national road safety programme. Its main message is that a road safety programme must be based on scientifically sound evidence in order to ensure that it focuses on the most relevant issues (made a correct ‘diagnosis’) and implements the most appropriate treatments (selected the best ‘therapy’). The paper results in five concrete recommendations for both the diagnosis and the therapy stages

Guidelines for assessing mobile phone use in road traffic (2019)

This FERSI paper focuses on one of the main key performance indicators in the area of road safety in current times, namely mobile phone use in traffic. It sets out the scientifically valid methodological approach for assessing the prevalence of mobile phone use of car drivers, cyclists and pedestrians through on-road observations and self-reports. It presents a total of 55 recommendations related to, for example, variable definition, selection of locations and timing, sample size, non-response, and data weighing.

FERSI supports EC policy on KPIs (2019)

In this statement, FERSI supports the EC’s policy on Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It acknowledges their usefulness for both monitoring road safety developments, and identifying the most promising interventions. It also describes the main prerequisites for an effective KPI policy.

FERSI calls for a road safety mission in Horizon Europe (2019)

FERSI calls for a road safety mission in Horizon Europe. FERSI statement for EC officials, national contact points and road safety organisations. In this short document FERSI clarifies and substantiates the need for further research and innovation in the area of road safety in order to meet the ambitious European objective of halving the number of road fatalities and serious injuries in the next decade, and having a road without victims in 2050.

Safety through automation? Ensuring that automated and connected driving contribute to a safer transportation system (2018)

This paper discusses the key questions related to traffic safety, automated driving (AD), connectivity and intelligent transport systems (ITS). The paper first gives a background to the problem and then lists a number of questions which are of primary concern to FERSI, and which have implications for traffic safety. The paper ends with a FERSI Code of principles for ‘Safety through automation’.

Country survey: State of the art of MAIS 3+ assessment in the FERSI Member States and EU/EEA countries (2016)

This document reports on the results of a survey among European countries in order to increase our understanding of the state and methods of the MAIS assessment, and the actual handling and storage of injury data in hospitals, and to identify possibilities and hurdles for combining MAIS diagnoses and police accident data or other indicators.  

Uniform approach to classification of injuries - Research and implementation measures (2014)

Existing and planned efforts in injury surveillance, prevention and analysis like IRTAD, CARE or JAMIE build a solid background for implementing the European objective of reducing the number of serious road traffic injuries. Additional more target-oriented activities are needed, including harmonization of definitions, quality of measures, and implementation strategies. This paper summarises the relevant activities necessary to complete the ongoing efforts.

Towards safer roads in Europe; Nine key challenges for road safety research for the next decade (2014)

FERSI has identified nine key challenges and related research questions that are important to address, if Europe wants to succeed in its ambition to improve road safety and reduce significantly the number of crash victims. These challenges are briefly outlined in this paper.