Research by TRL enables ground-breaking changes to European safety regulations to future proof the car industry, placing Europe in the lead on the road towards automated vehicles.

To listen to Richard Cuerden discuss this ground-breaking news, click here.

TRL has been working with the European Commission since 2014 to assess the feasibility of cutting-edge safety measures to introduce into regulation for new cars. This research has involved car manufacturers, governments and safety organisations to look at practical and innovative ways to reduce fatalities and protect road users.

Approval of these ground-breaking new safety standards marks a historical moment for vehicle regulation. The European General Safety Regulations are the first of their kind in the world and will deliver remarkable safety benefits to European society.

“I’m enormously proud of the work completed by TRL in developing these safety standards. It’s an outstanding achievement to gain approval from the European Commission who will now take the regulations to a Parliamentary vote,” said Richard Cuerden, Head of TRL’s Academy.

“We are working very hard for advanced and practical standards to be introduced for vehicles, not only in the UK but across Europe. This new safety legislation lays the ground work for what is going to come next as vehicles evolve from human to automated systems. As an organisation, TRL is helping to write the rulebook for this journey. I would like to thank the European Commission, Róża Thun MEP and all of the stakeholders involved in bringing these standards forward,” explained Cuerden.

TRL has supported the development of the new safety regulations by assessing a vast array of safety measures. The EU regulations will now include 17 new safety features designed to work in sync to protect lives and enhance road safety.

The European General Safety Regulations will see the development of new state-of-the-art vehicles in the EU auto industry with exceptional safety measures that will save thousands of lives and prevent serious injuries in the event of a collision.

“These innovative safety measures for new vehicles will support drivers in their ongoing tasks; intervene in the most critical situations to avoid a collision; and ensure that injuries to occupants, as well as pedestrians and cyclists, are significantly reduced”, explained Matthias Seidl, Senior Researcher for Vehicle Safety & Regulation at TRL.

TRL’s research is a worthy example of a UK organisation creating positive change at the heart of Europe, combining significant societal benefits to the EU industry regarding the challenges around developing automated vehicles. TRL is dedicated to improving vehicle safety and address complex issues around driver distraction, speeding and protecting vulnerable road users (VRU’s).

The European Commission has awarded TRL with a contract to support the development of the detailed technical rules for the new safety systems, including the world’s first automated regulations for cars.