Stockholm, 17 February 2020 – Sweden has today been presented with the prestigious iRAP Global Innovation Award recognising the lifesaving safety impacts of its 2+1 with wire rope median road design. The design has dramatically reduced head-on collisions and halved fatality and serious injury rates in Sweden and many countries around the world.

The 2+1 design incorporates two lanes of traffic in one direction and one lane in the opposite direction; separated by a median safety barrier. The design significantly reduces the risk of head-on crashes and provides additional safe overtaking opportunities for motorists, particularly on higher speed roads.

The award is an initiative of the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP), a global charity operating in more than 100 countries, and was presented to Sweden’s Minister for Infrastructure Tomas Eneroth during the 2020 Innovation Workshop, an official side event of the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference for Road Safety.

EuroRAP Secretary General Lina Konstantinopoulou, who leads the iRAP programme in Europe, said Sweden has been instrumental in introducing the 2+1 design and as a world leader influencing road safety policy outside of Europe.

“Since its first development in 2006, the innovation has been seen to achieve a remarkable reduction in severe crashes on Swedish implementation. Furthermore, it’s been much-copied and is transforming safety in Spain, Ireland, New Zealand and Australia – saving thousands of lives,” Ms Konstantinopoulou said.

Dr Anna Vadeby, senior researcher at The Swedish National Road and Transport Research institute, said “the evaluations of 2+1 roads show, in total, the number of fatalities and seriously injured decreased by 50% and studying only links (excluding intersections), the number of fatalities and seriously injured decreased by 63%.”

iRAP studies have recommended for 2+1 installations in a range of countries and in those with the highest road traffic injury rates, significant savings in fatalities, injuries and economic costs are forecast.

The recommended installation of 2+1 countermeasures on 17,500km of single carriageway roads in India would save 93,000 fatalities and serious injuries (FSIs) over 20 years, and on 40km where recommended in Mexico, 1,830 FSIs with a benefit to cost ratio of $5 for every $1 spent.

“The 2+1 design is an important countermeasure for road engineers and designers and will be key to helping countries meet the United Nations Global Road Safety Performance Targets,” Ms Konstantinopoulou said.

For more information, see the iRAP 2+1 Design from Sweden Case Study.

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About the 2020 Innovation Workshop

The 2020 Innovation Workshop is being held from 17-18 February 2020, co-hosted by iRAP, the International Transport Forum and World Bank. It is an official side event of the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety focussed on the theme of “Achieving Global Goals 2030”. The Ministerial will be attended by 1,500 delegates including minister-led delegations from 80 United Nations Member States, senior officials from United Nations agencies and representatives from civil society, academia and the private sector. The Conference will provide delegates with the opportunity to share successes and lessons from the implementation of the Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011–2020; chart future strategic directions for global road safety up to 2030 and beyond; and define ways to accelerate action on proven strategies to save lives.

About the International Road Assessment Program (iRAP)

iRAP is a registered charity with the vision for a world free of high risk roads. The charity is active in over 100 countries and works with governments, development banks, mobility clubs, research organisations and road safety NGOs to provide them with the free tools, systems and training to make their roads safer. iRAP’s Star Rating Methodology provides a simple and objective measure of the level of safety which is ‘built-in’ to the road for vehicle occupants, motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians. A 1-star road is the least safe and a 5-star road is the safest. The charity has influenced the safety of over USD$76 billion dollars of infrastructure investment, has Star Rated over 1 million kms of roads and trained over 22,000 people globally. iRAP is the umbrella programme for regional road assessment programmes including EuroRAP, ChinaRAP, AusRAP, usRAP, KiwiRAP, IndiaRAP, BrazilRAP, South Africa RAP, ThaiRAP and MyRAP and is financially supported by the FIA Foundation, Global Road Safety Facility and FedEx.

About the European Road Assessment Program (EuroRAP)

The European Road Assessment Programme (EuroRAP) is an international not for profit association set up in 1999 and registered in Belgium that is dedicated to saving lives through safer roads. The programme aims to reduce death and serious injury through a programme of systematic assessment of risk, identifying the major shortcomings that can be addressed by practical road improvement measures. It forges partnerships between those responsible for a safe road system – civil society, motoring organisations, vehicle manufacturers and road authorities – and aims to ensure that assessment of risk lies at the heart of strategic decisions on route improvements, crash protection and standards of route management. The programme receives structural funding from the FIA Foundation, the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP), and the European vehicle manufacturers’ association (ACEA). EuroRAP helps enable implementation of both the United Nations Sustainability Goals 3-4 on road safety relating to infrastructure safety. It supports European Commission goals on road safety and Directive 2008/96/EC on road infrastructure safety management.

Media contact:            

Lina Konstantinopoulou
EuroRAP Secretary General
EuroRAP Road Assessment Programme
+32 492 25 22 99
lina.konstantinopoulou@eurorap.org

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