1. People make mistakes that can lead to road crashes
The Safe System starts by putting people who walk, ride or drive at the centre or heart of the road transport system.
While people know (and mostly do) the right thing, some take risks deliberately or spontaneously and all make mistakes that can result in crashes.
2. The human body has a limited physical ability to tolerate crash forces before harm occurs
The human body has different tolerance limits in different crash scenarios.
Modern vehicles are increasingly better at absorbing kinetic energy in a crash – limiting its transfer into the human body where it causes trauma.
For example, a person walking has a 30km/h tolerance limit when struck, compared to a 70km/h tolerance limit for a driver involved in a head-on collision.
3. A shared responsibility to prevent crashes resulting in serious injury or death
There is a shared responsibility between all those who design, maintain, and use our road systems, and in those who provide post-crash care.
Individuals, governments, agencies, companies and community groups all have a shared responsibility.
On top of this, data analysis plays an important role in identifying existing risks and trends, and then in developing priorities and response plans to improve our road systems.
4. All parts of the system must be strengthened to multiple their effects
All parts of the system must be strengthened to multiply their effects so if one part fails, other aspects are still present, so road users remain protected.