Developing a safer road user behaviour index

Abeer Khudhur Jameel*, Harry Evdorides

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)
40 Downloads (Pure)


Road user behaviour is an essential factor of increasing the rate of traffic accidents worldwide. Road safety experts and scientists consider aspects of road users' behaviour to be the main risk factors for road fatalities. These factors include drinking alcohol, speeding, not wearing seat belts, not wearing helmets when riding two-wheeled vehicles, not using child restraints, consuming illegal drugs, and being distracted by mobile phone use. This paper aims to investigate the role of these factors in assessing the road user behaviour through aggregating them and build a composite indicator that can be used in countries benchmarking and cross countries comparison, then identifying most successful practises. To achieve this aim, data related to the selected indicators, life-saving rate, and real crash data were collected. The indicators were weighted using simple and theoretical methods. The weighted indicators were aggregated using simple additive method. The developed index was applied to 12 European countries to test the validation of the index through investigation the correlation between index’ ranking of countries with the ranking according to the rate of fatalities. It is concluded that the developed composite indicator can be used to assess the role of using the protection system and speeding in the severity of the road crashes. However, the role of the remaining factors in the likelihood of crashes occurrence needs more investigation. It can be concluded also that the road users' behaviour is not the only factor of reducing the road fatalities in some countries. This enhances the multidimensional system approach of defining the road safety. Based on this, it is recommended to consider other factors in conducting research, developing indices of road safety, and in recommending solutions. The results show also that the UK, Sweden, Ireland and Ireland have the most successful strategies to improve the road user behaviour among the selected countries; therefore, it is recommended to take lessons from these practices.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)70-78
Number of pages9
JournalIATSS Research
Issue number1
Early online date10 Jul 2020
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2021

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors are thankful to the Iraqi Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific research , The University of Mustansiriyah, Faculty of Engineering, Highway and Transportation Engineering Department for their financial support when undertaking this research.


  • Composite index
  • Road safety
  • Road user behaviour
  • Simple additive
  • Variable weighting

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Transportation
  • Engineering(all)
  • Safety Research
  • Urban Studies


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