Delivery of Local Road Safety (Road Safety Research Report No. 124)

  • Published: Department for Transport, 2011
  • Authors: AECOM in association with Tavistock Institute
  • Date Added: 10 Jul 2013
  • Last Update: 12 Feb 2016
  • Format: pdf


  • In 2008 the Department for Transport commissioned AECOM, in association with the Tavistock Institute, to design and deliver a three-year independent evaluation of local road user safety. The evaluation was commissioned to consider the following objectives:

    • To evaluate the different strategies and plans for delivering road user safety;

    • To assess what is being delivered, the key processes and how efficient local highway authority (LHA) practices are; and

    • To identify lessons and areas of good practice in road user safety investment.


Detailed review and exploration of engineering, enforcement and education, training and publicity (ETP) interventions.

Key Findings:

  • The focus for partnership working was once almost solely on improving outcomes, the assessment of efficiencies and ensuring value for money has become increasingly evident. This shift towards increasing productivity is changing the nature and extent of partnership working, including greater emphasis on:

    • Shared services and joint strategic commissioning;

    • A ‘whole area’ approach to managing budgets; and

    • New models for service delivery.

  • Local Government Improvement and Development identified the following overarching findings relating to future partnership working within local authorities:

    • The commitment to partnership working remains strong in the majority of authorities;

    • Partners are focusing on reviewing strategic objectives, leading to key principles for future collaboration;

    • Partnerships are taking the opportunity to consider their approaches to thinking and behaviour rather than merely structure; and

    • Partner organisations are seeking ways to pool and align resources to deliver more efficient and effective investment.

  • It has been evident throughout the evaluation that a ‘synergy’ effect has been achieved by local and sub-regional partnerships. The key benefits identified by partnership members included:

    • Greater resource availability (financial and personnel);

    • Wider stakeholder contacts, networks and, therefore, involvement/influence;

    • Reduced duplication of investment;

    • Integration of investment solutions (‘packages’) generating benefits greater than the individual elements; and

    • Economy of scale due to the increased bargaining power of a partnership, especially in the case of Education, Training and Publicity (ETP) interventions.

  • The main organisations commonly involved in combining resources are:

    • Local authority;

    • Health stakeholders;

    • Communities, charities and other stakeholders;

    • Police; and,

    • Fire and rescue service.

  • Three different levels or types of partnership have been identified through the evaluation, with the majority being established to address primarily road safety issues. Each level has generated benefits among the case study authorities in different areas of road safety delivery, including the following:

    • Mini Partnership – defined as the internal collaborative working within local authorities and between divisions and departments. Benefits have included the utilisation of the skills and resources of other teams, including both funding and human resources.

    • MidiPartnerships – defined as the collaboration between local authorities and key organisations within their authority boundary. These derived from the traditional safety camera partnerships, involving the police, emergency services, etc., to delivery targeted interventions. Examples included a joint local authority and ambulance service leaflet campaign targeting motorcyclists, funded by the former as ‘their investment for the future’. Joint schools based delivery between authorities and the fire and rescue service was highlighted as enhancing delivery efficiency and effectiveness.

    • Maxi Partnerships – consisting of regional or sub-regional partnership working between local authorities. Partnerships have been effective in the development and delivery of publicity campaigns to influence cross-border road users (where residence and employment locations are in adjacent authorities) and targeted mode-specific marketing (motorcyclists, for example). Cross-boundary route-based investments have also been assisted through the presence of Maxi Partnerships.

  • Partnerships were therefore observed as a central strand of local authority working. The following are further examples of good practice partnership working from the case study local authorities:

    • Establishing common objectives and aims can enhance partnership formation and direction – this can also avoid duplication and contribute to economy of resources;

    • The secondment of partner staff into local authority teams can enhance joint working, providing a better appreciation of delivery pressures and processes – fire and rescue officers have exemplified this, enhancing integration;

    • Local authorities, the police and ambulance services collaborated on a regional publicity campaign, using photographs of trauma victims to enhance the underlying message;

    • The presence of national targets, and supporting local level targets, have been important stimuli to local partnership working; and

    • Regional and sub-regional partnerships have been evident, and have been effective for ETP activities – the pooling of resources across authorities and partners can generate cost savings for publicity campaigns.


Partnerships, Road Safety Management


Provides information about partnerships.