Road Infrastructure Safety Management Directive
On 17 May 2018 the EU Commission presented its proposal for a review of the Road Infrastructure Safety Management Directive (2008/96/EC). This proposal was part of the broader EU Commission package known as the ‘Third Mobility Package’.
This proposal premises that properly maintained roads can reduce the probability of road traffic accidents, while ‘forgiving’ roads (roads laid out in an intelligent way to ensure that driving errors do not immediately have serious consequences) can reduce the severity of accidents that do happen.
DETAILED EXPLANATION OF THE SPECIFIC PROVISIONS OF THE PROPOSAL
The general objective of the proposed initiative is to reduce road fatalities and serious injuries on EU road networks by improving the safety performance of road infrastructure. The specific objectives include:
- improving the follow-up on the findings of road infrastructure safety management procedures;
- fostering harmonisation and knowledge sharing between Member States on these procedures and requirements;
- protecting vulnerable road users;
- improving the deployment of new technologies; and
- working towards a consistently high level of road safety across Member States, using the limited financial resources efficiently.
The revised Directive aims to achieve these objectives by introducing the following main changes:
- mandating transparency and follow-up of infrastructure safety management procedures;
- introducing a network-wide road assessment, a systematic and proactive risk mapping procedure to assess the ‘in-built’, or inherent, safety of roads across the EU;
- extending the scope of the Directive beyond the trans-European transport network (TEN-T) to cover motorways and primary roads outside the network as well as all roads outside urban areas that are built using EU funds in whole or in part;
- setting general performance requirements for road markings and road signs to make it easier to roll out cooperative, connected and automated mobility systems; and
- making it mandatory to systematically take vulnerable road users into account in all road safety management procedures.
The proposal has now been sent to the European Parliament and European Council for scrutiny over the coming months. The European Parliament, in particular, has made clear that they wish to propose several major amendments to the current proposal prior to further negotiations with the European Commission in early 2019. The European Parliament will begin substantive scrutiny of the Commission proposal in Transport Committee (TRAN), following the summer recess in September.
WHY ENGAGE ON THIS ISSUE?
This revised regulation will be in place for five years before it is reviewed again. Therefore, the current negotiations present a unique opportunity for interested stakeholders to influence the framework for road infrastructure to develop new commercial opportunities.
With the Commission proposal now published, there is now a time-limited opportunity to proactively engage with the European Parliament and European Council.
EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT SCRUTINY
As noted, the European Parliament will now scrutinise the Commissions’ position and propose amendments. The TRAN Committee have been awarded the rapporteurship of the main Report, with the ITRE Committee deciding against rapporteuring the Opinion to the Report. The Rapporteurship of the report has been awarded to the EFDD Group, with the named MEP yet to be announced. The Shadow Rapporteurs to the Report are as follows.
Shadow Rapporteurship – TRAN Report:
SCHMIDT Claudia – EPP
VAN MILTENBURG Matthijs – ALDE|Party
CRAMER Michael – The Greens | EFA
KONEČNÁ Kateřina – GUE / NGL
Shadow Rapporteurship – ITRE – The committee decided not to give an opinion
EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT TIMELINE
The European Parliament indicative committee calendar has yet to be formally announced. However, we understand that the draft timetable – subject to pollical agreements during negotiations – will aim to begin the substantive negotiations will commence immediately after the summer recess, with a parliamentary vote before the end of the year.
Indicative EP Committee timetable:
- Draft Report – Early September
- Amendment deadline – Late September
- Final Report – Late October
- Plenary vote – November
- Final legislative Trilogue – December/January 2019 onward
EUROPEAN COUNCIL SCRUTINY
The Austrian Presidency has just begun their six-month rotating presidency of the EU Council and will therefore be the first presidency to scrutinise the tyre labelling proposals. However, given the time this legislative package would take to negotiate, it is likely that the trilogue negotiations between the Parliament, Council and Commission will likely take place in early 2019 under the Romanian Presidency of the EU Council.
You can download our analysis here. Road Infrastructure Safety Management