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This fact sheet describes the road safety aspects of public transport and of level crossings – places where road and rail networks intersect. Public transport vehicles comprise buses, trams, light rail vehicles and trains.

In the Netherlands, on average, more than 50 people die every year in a submerged vehicle crash. More than two thirds die from drowning. The casualties are mainly car occupants, while cyclist and mobility scooter fatalities are also numerous. Casualties are mostly male and aged 18-24.

Visual information is of the utmost importance to road users. In darkness, both public lighting and vehicle lighting help road users take stock of the traffic situation and help them to be seen by others. Installing public lighting leads to a 50% reduction in the number of nighttime injury crashes.

In 2009-2018, an annual average of 51 young drivers and passengers (aged 18-24) were killed in traffic. For young drivers, fatal crash risk is 4,5 times higher than for more experienced drivers. Crash risk is highest during the first year after acquisition of the driving licence, and subsequently decreases fast as young drivers gain more experience

A pedestrian fall or collision is only a road crash (pedestrian crash) when a moving vehicle is involved. Between 2010 and 2019, an annual average of 59 pedestrians were killed in road crashes. Between 1999 and 2019, the number of pedestrian road deaths dropped by 62%.

A bicycle helmet is intended to protect cyclists against head and brain injuries when they are involved in crashes. The helmet does not prevent bicycle crashes (see the SWOV fact sheet Cyclists for general bicycle safety measures).

In 2015, 47 motorcyclists died in traffic in the Netherlands. After 2009, when their number was approximately 1,300, it has not been possible to reliably determine the number of serious road injuries due to poor registration. In the Netherlands 1,4 million people have a motorcycle licence, but as there are 656,000 registered motorcycles, less than half own a motorcycle.

Published: (SWOV) | Goldenbeld, Ch.
Published: (SWOV) | Kint, S.T. van der; Mons, C.