RPS shares Vehicle Restraint Innovations at Swedish Road Safety Conference

21 Jan 2020

Sweden, which remains at the forefront of road safety, is now looking to Irish innovation to inspire new pragmatic approaches to road safety measures - specifically vehicle restraint systems (VRS), or safety barriers in short. They are responding to continuing pressure to ensure safety standards for transport infrastructure keep pace with evolving travel habits and vehicle capabilities. 

RPS was recently invited to speak at the Swedish Safety Barrier Association’s conference on road network safety. Hosted by the Swedish Safety Barrier Association (SVBRF) and the Swedish Road Workers Safety Association (SVSB), the conference heard from a wide range of speakers, from the Swedish Road Administration, Swedish Transport Agency, Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute and the Norwegian Public Roads Administration among others.

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Rowan O’Callaghan presenting at the recent SVBRF / SVSB Road Safety Conference in Stockholm

The event, titled ‘A safer traffic environment for those who use or work on the road’, covered a breadth of aspects from barrier integrity and driver psychologies to connected and autonomous vehicles. The variety of topics ranged from bridge parapet containment for inter-urban coaches, to road user behaviour in work zones from a psychological perspective, to preparations in Sweden for connected and autonomous vehicles. The event attracted over 150 delegates, mainly from Scandinavia.

Rowan O’Callaghan, RPS Technical Director from Galway, shared the innovation RPS applied in our design solution for Transport Infrastructure Ireland’s dynamic N58 pilot project. This featured the country’s first tests of vehicle impacts on road safety barriers using innovative screw and pin bracing to secure them on less stable ground.

By pushing the boundaries of enquiry and commitment to securing the best safety results, RPS has demonstrated leadership in VRS engineering design, achieving:

  • Sole consultant sitting on the Executive Committee of the Irish Barrier Association
  • Leading VRS design consultant for 22 local authorities
  • Key advisor to Transport Infrastructure Ireland
  • Trainer for the Engineers Ireland VRS design course


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Rowan O'Callaghan

Director - Transport & Asset Management T: +353 71 913 8909 Email

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