Elderly driver safety and winter weather disruption among topics at transport conference

How can elderly drivers become safer on the roads? How could road systems be improved to reduce accidents? And what is the cost of winter weather travel disruption to individual travellers?

These will be among the topics discussed by over 100 transport experts gathering at a conference in Aberdeen today (Wednesday, January 4).

The Universities’ Transport Study Group (UTSG) annual conference will bring together academics from across the UK to address key issues on the country’s transport agenda.

Latest research into the consumer market for electric cars and developments in efforts to reduce traffic growth and congestion in cities across the globe will also be highlighted at the event, which is hosted by the University of Aberdeen.

How social networking could be used to improve traveller information, the impact of transport choice on a person’s happiness and the potential effects of withdrawing local authority funding for school public transport will also be on the agenda over the course of the three day event.

The conference, which is in its 44th year, will be opened by Professor Ian Diamond, Principal of the University of Aberdeen.

The event is particularly notable for the high standard of papers delivered by postgraduate students competing for the prestigious Smeed Prize for the best student paper and an award of £500.

Jillian Anable, Acting Director of the University’s Centre for Transport Research said: “This is the first time the UTSG conference has come to Aberdeen and it is an honour for the University to host this event which provides an important platform for key experts from the transport sector to discuss current thinking.

“The conference will cover the broadest spectrum of issues concerning the current state of transport in the UK.

“Examples include research into how traffic accidents could be reduced by changing the way in which junctions are designed, and the financial and social consequences of adverse weather conditions.

“The environmental impact of transport will also be high on the conference agenda – looking at the role the electric car could play in reducing carbon emissions in the future, and who is most likely to drive such a vehicle, will be one of the topics up for debate.

“Experts will also discuss the measures which could be put into place to improve older driver safety including the introduction of technology into cars which could help support elderly drivers.”

The 44th UTSG annual conference takes place at the University of Aberdeen’s King’s College Campus from January 4 – 6.

For more information visit www.utsg.net/web/