WIT Press

The Public Perception Towards The Road Safety Measures In Estonia


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WIT Press


D. Antov, T. Rõivas & T. Oja


With increasing motorization the number of traffic fatalities is a serious problem in many countries. Two studies addressing the road fatalities in Estonia as compared to other countries are described in this paper. The LiMo surveys, addressing the traffic behaviour of both drivers and pedestrians by means of a questionnaire and field survey have been provided in Estonia since 2001. Another study, SARTRE – Social Attitudes Towards the Road Traffic Risk in Europe has been carried out since 1989 (since 2002 in Estonia) and provides comparative data for different European countries. The results of the studies show that speeding and drunken driving are the largest problems in Estonia’s traffic. The same problems are also recognized by public perception. At the same time, the passive road safety measures (use of reflectors, seat belts) are often considered secondary, less important measures. There is a big conflict between the attitudes and self-behaviour of the road users, and the self-responsibility of safety improvement is still very low. For example, the number of cases of driving after alcohol consumption reached 2% in Estonia and 4,9% in the capital city Tallinn in 2003. One driver in five exceeds the speed limit by more than 10 kph, however the public perception is that speeding by other drivers is recognised to be twice as much as oneself. The use of the mandatory seat belt is ignored by almost one driver in three and about three passengers in four for the back seat. Ascertaining the public perception of the factors that continue to contribute to driver and pedestrian accidents and, secondly, assessing road-use behaviour hopefully provide the foundation for developing fruitful strategies to decrease road fatalities. Keywords: road behaviour, safety.


road behaviour, safety.