Psychology applied to traffic engineering

Although traffic engineering is in the realm of the exact sciences, understanding human behaviour and applying psychological principles can be useful to increase safety and compliant behaviour by road users. This is illustrated by an experiment conducted in the US, which was designed to increase the number of drivers stopping for pedestrians at crosswalks. According […]

Road signs and the way we process information

  Road signs should convey the maximum amount of information with the minimum amount of content, as it is not possible for drivers to stop their vehicle and carefully read the instructions presented. Therefore, images, typeface, colours and shapes of road signage are designed, or at least should be, in a way that their meaning […]

Design interventions for safer streets

New design strategies are being tested in Mumbai to improve road safety. Last week, a temporary artwork was installed in the Mithchowki intersection, a risky road area in Mumbai, according to Global Designing Cities Initiative (GDCI). The redesign was based on principles of the Global Street Design Guide which focuses on distributing the road space […]

In-ground traffic lights

A trial of in-ground traffic lights is being conducted by the NSW state government to reduce accidents involving pedestrians, especially those addicted to their mobile phones. In-ground traffic lights were installed at the intersections of Pitt and Goulburn streets, and Hay and Dixon streets, as reported by SMH. The lights turn red to signal pedestrians […]

Back to school: how to improve traffic and safety

Have you noticed how there is less traffic during school holidays? You are not mistaken, data reveals that the school holidays have a noticeable and positive effect on traffic and public transport usage. During that period in 2016/17, traffic volumes fell by 15% between 8:30 and 9:00 am on Victorian state roads. However, between 10:00…...

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Impact of new laws for cyclists and drivers

As we reported last week in our Wayfinding Blog, “New fines for cyclists could see bikes dumped for cars”, there are many changes to road rules affecting cyclists and motorists, effective today. Here we outline the crux of these; New laws for drivers passing cyclists Drivers in NSW must leave one metre of space when […]

New fines for cyclists could see bikes dumped for cars

From the 1st March, NSW bike riders will be faced with a bevy of new and increased fines.  Riding without a helmet will increase from $71 to $319, riding without ID will cost $106 (abc.net.au),  while the penalty for running a red light will increase to $425, according to the SMH. The City of Sydney […]

V2V and V2I new transport technology in NYC

Vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication is fast becoming one of the biggest sea changes in transportation technology, following right behind the foot steps of self-driving vehicles. The core essence of this technology allows cars, signs and traffic to communicate with one another over Wi-Fi-like airways, according to theverge.com. As such, drivers will have access to more […]

Salt Lake City: less cars and more bikes = a boost to retail profitability

    Salt Lake City leads by example.  Retailers are renown for hitting the panic button when there are plans to remove on-street parking and add extra space for bicycles.  However, according to Streetsblog.org,  a growing body of evidence suggests that the introduction of additional bikes and bike lanes, can lead to a calmer streetscape […]

The future of driverless cars – how soon will they be here?

    The South Australian Government have joined the driverless car movement with a recent commitment to “pass laws to allow driverless cars on the road within a decade”, according to the ABC.  The SA Government hopes to “foster technological innovation and revive Australia’s manufacturing industry” with this initiative. Consequently, the first trials for driverless […]

Safety Trucks Hit the Road in Argentina

Argentina has one of the highest car accident rates in the world (alertdriving.com), claiming over 20 lives a day.  Most of these accidents involve cars passing trucks on two-lane roads, as reported in businessinsider.com.au.  To help combat this problem Samsung have released a prototype for a Safety Truck, which could potentially make driving a lot […]

Driverless Cars – Google’s vision for road safety

The Globe and Mail (Vancouver) reports on a recent TED Talk regarding Google’s driverless car program.  The man behind this program, Chris Urmson (Google’s Director of Self-Driving Cars) declares the technology designed to remove humans from the driver’s seat will be available within the next five years. Urmson remarks, “we’ve made some pretty exciting progress and at […]

Car-Free Areas announced for Central Park

A new initiative from the City of New York, Office of the Mayor, Bill de Blasio, has released some key improvements to major sections of Central Park, which will be solely dedicated to recreation.  Improvements to Central Park and Prospect Park will make the majority of each park car-free.  These changes will restore major sections […]

Sweden’s Vision Zero – benchmark for road safety

What do Stockholm, Rotterdam and Berlin have in common?  They are all involved in Vision Zero, aspiring to road safety at its best. The Vision Zero concept first originated in Sweden in 1997.  Swedish parliament adopted it as their official road policy.  The central theme for Vision Zero is to reduce all traffic fatalities and severe […]

US Report Card on State cycling

A pro-active and leading authority on bike riding in the US, the League of American Bicyclists, has released its 2015 State Rankings, highlighting which states are doing the most – and the least – to make bicycling a safe and convenient way to get around. Washington must be doing something right as they top the […]

Would London’s Congestion Charging work in Australia?

If you had to pay $20 to enter the CBD by car, would you take public transport instead?  Apparently, if London’s experience is translatable, the answer is yes!  In 2003, in an attempt to improve the untenable congestion and pollution that plagued Central London, the government introduced “Congestion Charging”.  All private and commercial vehicles entering […]

Dutch cycling experts offer advice on road safety

There’s no easy answer to the problems of cycling safety in Australia, but the first order of business is a change in attitude toward cycling and cyclists.  This was the observation of Dutch experts, Arie Vijfhuizen and Martijn te Lintelo, recently visiting Australia on a national tour speaking about road safety and cycling, reports the […]

Decluttering Confusing Signage

The City of Sydney has been presented with a motion to simplify parking and traffic signage across the city.  As reported in The Daily Telegraph, Cr Jenny Green presented the motion asking the Council’s CEO to investigate what other cities and local councils are doing to simplify signage. Mosman Council is undergoing a plan to […]

School Traffic: Looking at reduction options

In the last of our school traffic series, we are taking a look at some of the school traffic congestion alternatives being put forward locally and overseas.   The alternatives relate not only to traffic congestion but also how school communities can encourage more active alternatives for children travelling to and from school. In Mosman, Councillor […]

Wayfinder signs encourage sustainable mobility

Wayfinder signs encourage sustainable mobility

In several towns and cities in the UK, wayfinder signs aimed at making it easier for pedestrians to navigate and explore are being installed.  The new look signage encourages sustainable mobility by helping residents and tourists to navigate their way around town centres and to local landmarks on foot. The Wayfinder system consists of six-foot […]

School Traffic Safety: why won’t parents learn?

School traffic campaign

In NSW the Police and school principals are appealing to motorists and parents to refrain from dangerous driving behaviour in and around schools.  In just the first four days of this school year, there has been a 17% increase in the number of motorists caught speeding and a 24% rise in illegal parking infringements issued […]

School traffic targeted by Brisbane City Council

Brisbane City Council plans to target school traffic in 2015 by deploying parking officers in school pick-up and drop-off zones.  The Council has commissioned eight marked cars for use by parking officers to enable them to enforce school zone traffic rules and deal with parking issues around the city’s schools. Council will also work with […]

School Traffic: How much can Sydney take?

During school terms it is not only traffic which increases but also pressure on public transport systems, localised congestion around schools and particularly at drop off and pick up zones.  All of this equates to an added strain on resources such as roads, public transport, police and local government and consequently to a drain on […]

Smart mobility can make cities sustainable

Image:  www.cleanmpg.com According to the World Resources Institute and World Bank, 2015 presents a great opportunity to work towards making cities more sustainable.  Helping put cities on the right path   will require investment in sustainable, low-carbon urban transport systems, infrastructure and technology. “We can either continue to build car-orientated cities that lock in these unsustainable […]

Australian Road Safety

2013-2014 Road Toll by State/Territory Image:  www.museumvictoria.com.au During the twelve months ending December 2014 there were 1,153 road fatalities in Australia.  Overall this is a 2.9% reduction on the 2013 road toll.  However, state by state analysis is showing concerning increases in Victoria (2.5%), South Australia (9.2%), Western Australia (11.7%) and the Northern Territory (5.4%).  […]

Traffic light hacking a security risk

While it might sound like a plot line from the latest action blockbuster, the exposure of traffic signal systems to hacking is a real risk that needs to be addressed.  A group of researchers from the University of Michigan published a paper recently which details how they were able to break into the signal system, […]

NZ trials new pedestrian crossing technology

It’s one of those things that makes you wonder….”why didn’t anyone think of that before?”  As reported in the Otago Times, Invercargill is the first in the world to trial a new technology for pedestrian crossings.  Simple as it sounds, it allows the would-be-crosser to press the button and then activate a longer crossing cycle, […]

Transport NSW trials CITS technology for truckies

In an initiative aimed at improving traffic flow and reducing heavy vehicle collisions, Transport NSW has announced a trial of a high-tech early warning system for truck drivers.  As reported in the Illawarra Mercury, heavy vehicles will be fitted with Co-operative Intelligent Transport Systems (CITS) technology which allows trucks to transmit and receive warnings about possible […]