The iRAP methodology is based on sound research and compelling evidence. Throughout the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020, we will ensure iRAP is at the forefront of putting research into practice.
The iRAP methodology was derived from EuroRAP and AusRAP models by leading researchers from TRL (United Kingdom), ARRB Group (Australia), MRI Global (United States) and the world’s automobile clubs and particular assistance from the Swedish Road Administration. The model’s ongoing development and oversight is governed by a Global Technical Committee (GTC) comprised of iRAP members with significant expertise in road infrastructure safety, and representatives from iRAP Centres of Excellence.
Through application in dozens of countries and research, iRAP methodology has undergone continual review and validation. At the broadest level, the road safety improvement programmes proposed for the four initial pilot countries (and many countries since then) have provided useful and practical information for local safety engineers. This is unsurprising, given that the methodology shares its heritage with programmes that have a demonstrated record of saving lives.
As Star Ratings are often used where there is little crash data available, it is nevertheless important to understand whether they correlate with actual crashes. Studies of this topic have been conducted in Australia, Germany, Iceland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Sweden, the United Kingdom and the United States. In each case, a demonstrable relationship between Star Rating and crash rate was found.
In 2010, the Global Road Safety Facility sponsored a workshop to open the methodology to independent review, especially with respect to speed. Participants included representatives from the Institute of Transport Economics (Norway), the Dutch national road safety institute (SWOV) and the Korea Transport Institute (KOTI). The workshop concluded that the methodology was impressive, comprehensive and systematic, and that it provides researchers with a strong platform to guide research needs globally.
iRAP draws on decades of research and experience by dedicated road safety professionals around the world. As we move through the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020, we will also put new knowledge into practice. There is more to learn about road infrastructure risk in low-income and middle-income countries, such as finding optimal ways to help pedestrians cross busy roads.
In partnership with leading researchers and road authorities around the world, including those discussed earlier along with the Malaysian Institute of Road Safety Research (MIROS), the Mexican Institute of Transport (IMT), the Research Institute of Highway (RIOH) in China and the Transport Research Board (TRB) in the United States, iRAP will continually improve its methodology for the benefit of road safety.