Perceptions of safety: findings from focus groups
Published: Aug 2020
Author: Posner R, Christmas S, Cooper A, Shepherd J, & Helman S
A key finding was that people do not tend to report ‘safety’ as something that is directly experienced; rather, people report an absence of negative experiences and feelings associated with believing oneself to be at risk.
These experiences and feelings of ‘unsafety’ appear to vary along at least three related dimensions. First, they can be more emotional or more cognitive in nature. Second, the source of risk can vary in how known or unknown it is. Third, the extent to which a risk is seen as manageable or unmanageable varies.
These dimensions provide a framework in which Highways England can understand when, where and why their customers feel unsafe when on the network. Recommendations around whether and how to reduce feelings of unsafety are given. These include using the framework to further understand the complexity of perceptions of unsafety, suggestions for road design, and a focus on targeting moments of change and unfamiliarity in the road network.
Get in Touch
Have a question? Speak to one of our experts today