Worldwide: ILCAD planning well-advanced

3 Mar

LXinfoImage1229-ILCAD 2014
Since 2009 the International Level Crossing Awareness Day (ILCAD) campaign has been spearheaded by the International Union of Railways (UIC) with the support of the railway community around the world. A growing number of road sector organizations, the European Commission and the United Nations – Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) are also involved in raising awareness of the risks at level crossings in order to change road users’ and pedestrians’ behaviour to “act safely at level crossings”.

This campaign starts from the statistics which show that too many people die or are injured in accidents at level crossings. European statistics show that while level crossing accidents account for only 1% of road deaths they comprise 28% of all rail fatalities. In the majority of cases harm arises as a result of either wilful of accidental misuse by motorists and pedestrians but the popular misconception is that these incidents are solely a railway problem. Clearly there are instances where it is reasonable to expect that railway infrastructure managers to modify and upgrade level crossings to reduce risk so far as is practicable.

Education of road users and pedestrians is an essential element of work to reduce risk arising at level crossings. Key within this is raising awareness of the arrangements for the safe use of level crossings and the potential consequence if these arrangements are not followed. Where education is not delivering correct behaviours at level crossings, enforcement measures will need to be implemented.

Last year, ILCAD was held on May 7th, 2013 and saw 45 countries participating. The day was marked by a press conference and briefing in Geneva as part of the second UN Global Road Safety Week. The key focus was on young people and distraction from mobile phones and other hand held devices

The 6th ILCAD will take place on June 3rd, 2014 with a range of initiatives in participating countries. Portugal is the host of the briefing and press conference to introduce the 2014 campaign which focuses on professional drivers.

If you are not already engaged with ILCAD 2014, you may participate free of charge as all activity is on a purely collaborative basis to reduce the level of risk arising at the road-rail interface.

5 Responses to “Worldwide: ILCAD planning well-advanced”

  1. Andrew Fraser March 4, 2014 at 08:56 #

    I wonder if there’s any more evidence that “education of road users” is “delivering” any improvement in this arena than there is in the roads arena, more generally. Surely, the people who need “education” are those responsible for the system – but ILCAD doesn’t seem to address that question.

    • aidannelson March 4, 2014 at 10:41 #

      ILCAD is positioned within the Es philosophy that risk arising at level crossings has to be managed holistically with Engineering, Education and Enforcement strands combining as a whole. The first E is for engineering which is the responsibility of the rail and highways authorities optimising the configuration of level crossings. The second E is education and the third enforcement. That ILCAD is focused on education is absolutely the right role for an international initiative to raise awareness. many of the events organised nationally under the ILCAD umbrella supplement the ILCAD message with initiatives that give a greater weight to the engineering and enforcement strands.

      As for evidence that awareness raising and education have delivered a very significant contribution to reducing risk arising at level crossings is Operation Lifesaver in the USA where research conducted at North Western University in Illinois by Ian Savage.

      • John Tilly March 16, 2014 at 10:46 #

        One of the problems in the UK is the limited belief on the part of highway authorities and agencies that thay have some responsibility fot the highway elements of level crossings. Whilst there has been some improvement in recent years, there are still wide gaps in the level of co-operation. Education of users is everyone’responsibilty and particularly DfT’ role in highway education.

  2. aidannelson March 16, 2014 at 12:10 #

    I couldn’t have put it better myself.

  3. Andrew Fraser March 17, 2014 at 09:04 #

    It’s possible that we’ll start to make some progress when we stop simply blaming the user. In my experience, the greatest barrier to progress was (and possibly still is) the inability of the various railway authorities involved to grasp the fact that there is rather more to life than the Highway Code.

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