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State of the Art - Background

There is a well-documented relationship between speed and collisions. Excessive and inappropriate speed is estimated to be the single biggest contributory factor in fatal road crashes. Speed - which encompasses excessive speed and inappropriate speed - contributes as much as one-third of fatal accidents and is an aggravating factor in all accidents.

A systemic approach to speed management requires work on three fundamental pillars:

- infrastructure design and planning: setting appropriate and identifiable speed limits;

- education and enforcement: driver behaviour and police enforcement;

- in-built technology: speed management achieved through intrinsic vehicle parameters.

While much work and attention has been given to the first two pillars, arguably less effort has been put into the third. Management of speed can be arranged by intrinsic parameters such as vehicle design, an idea that has been at the core of developments in speed management technology. As a consequence, ShLOW will give a considerable emphasis on speed management technologies, such as Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) systems.


The project was designed to:

1. Disseminate research:

The project will help to disseminate high quality research, carried out by experts and the EU, to wider areas of society thanks to the 'Speed Management Lectures', the Speed Management Camp and the students' initiatives under the ShLOW 'Challenge'. Students in particular will be actively involved in promoting this knowledge to greater areas of society (e.g. local authorities, companies, consumers and the wider public);

2. Invest in future transport decision-makers:

By making students across Europe aware of the link between safety and sustainability, ShLOW must be seen as an investment in the future of high quality transport research. Many of the students addressed will become transport decision-makers in their countries;

3. Enforce the 'shared responsibility';

4. Act as a conduit for ongoing activities on speed management:

The students selected within ShLOW will have the opportunity to run an individual action that can be linked to and amplify existing national or local initiatives on speed;

5. To disseminate best practice across Europe;

6. Encourage new efforts:

To encourage new initiatives/research in the field of speed management.

Description of Work

Preparation and management

First 6 months: a ShLOW steering committee was set up and made up of 3 staff members from 23 of the 14 consortium's organisations. ETSC also set up a ShLOW website, which was regularly updated throughout the project.

The Lecture

During months 7 to 12, representatives from the ShLOW beneficiaries gave a series of lectures at 57 universities across Europe. The lectures were delivered by the in-country project beneficiaries. The lectures presented the entire ShLOW programme to students who were then encouraged to apply.

The Challenge

The students will carry out their projects and raise public awareness on Speed Management. The objective will be to run a small-scale speed management project and possibly to get a commitment from an organisation, a public body or a private company. The students are supported by ETSC, the project beneficiaries, and ETSC's 'in country' member organisations.

The Award Ceremony

The students who succeed in running a successful initiative will receive an award during the conference that will take place in Brussels in 2010.

National experts will present their country's perspective on speed management and exchange best practices, and successful students selected within SHLOW will present their initiatives.

There will be representatives of public bodies, NGOs, European Institutions, private companies and journalists.

Expected Results

The expected results are:

- to have dedicated students undertake speed management activities within their local surroundings in ten EU countries;

- to spread the knowledge from transport research into speed management across Europe;

- to improve road safety and reduce greenhouse gas emissions;

- to motivate students to develop a career in the field of sustainable and safe road transportation.

The project wants to promote solutions that are scarcely implemented, like intelligent speed-assistance systems. The project is intended to reach beneficiaries within the public at large since it will be subject to public scrutiny through media coverage and the organisation of events.

Three strategic elements ensure that students are not the only recipients of ShLOW. Local authorities, young professionals working in transportation, small and medium-size enterprises and NGOs are all affected by the project thanks to:

- The ShLOW Lectures: many stakeholders concerned with speed management had a chance to attend the lectures given at universities;

- The Students' Challenge: students selected within ShLOW will have to demonstrate evidence from transport research into speed by undertaking an awareness-raising campaign;

- The Award Ceremony: Stakeholders with a 'shared responsibility' in reducing road death and injury, and experts on safety will have a chance to attend the award ceremony.