What is a road safety audit?
A road safety audit is formal independent safety review of a road transportation project by a team of safety specialists addressing the safety of all users. The audit can occur after the planning study, conceptual design, preliminary design, or detailed design, as well as during construction or prior to facility opening. When audits are scheduled earlier in the project process, there is greater opportunity to introduce safety improvements. On large projects, road safety audits are typically done at multiple stages.
The independence of the review from the design team and project owner allows a fresh analysis of the project uniquely from the perspective of road safety. Our audits are not checks against compliance with design standards. Rather, using safe systems principles, our audits identify, explain, and quantify risk factors associated with a proposed design. Our audits identify potential risk mitigating strategies for the consideration of of the design team and project owner. Our findings are presented in a meeting to the project team, and the project team must produce an audit response report addressing their response to each item to form part of the project’s permanent record. It is not a requirement for the project team to accept any or all of the audit team’s recommendations.
The ultimate goal of an audit is to empower a project owner to reduce the likelihood of serious injuries and fatalities once a new or re-constructed facility is open to road users.