European Road Safety Charter
Good Practice

Innovative solution to restoring road safety by removing car accident debris

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Innovative solution to restoring road safety by removing car accident debris

Initiative details

01/01/2021 to 30/09/2021

Organisation details

Eurosistra Portugal Lda. - Seguranca e Ambiente
Contact name 
Ines Barroso
Telephone number 
Please describe the main road safety challenges/problems you have addressed or are addressing. 
As a result of a road accident, debris and waste from the parts from the vehicles often are left on the roads which, if not removed and promptly cleaned, can become a risk factor for the occurrence of new accidents. Due to the lack of operational resources and technical expertise, the waste from the cars, namely, oil, fuel, plastics and glasses, remain on the pavement, making them less safe and more polluted. Other times, the residues are cleaned with contaminating products and/or left on the side of the road, ending up on the ground, or simple wasted away with fire hoses to the fields, contaminating water lines and the surrounding areas. Some accidents can also cause damage to road safety equipment, which is essential for the safety of the drives or for the regular information placed on the roads, like vertical signage, protective barriers, information boards, among others. Eurosistra Portugal, Lda., with the registered brand "Seguranca e Ambiente" meaning Safety and Environment - manages, through its daily work, to act on these three main issues: Restore the Road Safety (by a proper and innovative solution and equipment for cleaning the road and removing and recycling all the waste recovered from the car accidents); the protection of the environment through the use of biological products and the removal of waste, including the liquids (that are usually washed away by other entities that work in this area); and finally the identification of damaged Urban Equipment, sent to the Civil Protection of the Townhall in which the accident occurred, in order to assure its fast replacement. Reinforcing and strengthening road safety, protecting drivers and all those who travel on the roads, as well as protecting and respecting the environment, are the basic principles on which our project is built, which are set up in the European Road Safety Charter. EUROSISTRA PORTUGAL established an ambitious objective called “ OBJECTIVE ZERO ACCIDENTS AFTER AN ACCIDENT", with the strong belief that this project has a direct and important contribution to reducing accidents caused due the existence of waste from a previous accident that was not taken care of in the proper way, whether by poor cleaning or no cleaning at all. Thus, the main objectives of this project are: - Reduce the rate of road accidents caused by the inexistent or poor cleaning of pavements after a road accident; - Ensure the correct and safe return to normal road traffic in the shortest possible time, assuring the reestablishment of road safety; - Contribute to the Environmental Protection by cleaning the roads according to legal requirements, in particular to environmental legislation, and thus, also promoting sustainable policies directed to reducing road accidents. The target audience of Eurosistra Portugal are all agents and entities that manage roads and their safety, namely the Municipalities/City Halls, Road Concessions and Civil Protection, along with other entities called upon when a car accident occurs, namely police and fireman. Since it is their responsibility to keep the roads safe, we ally to these entities to improve road safety conditions and reduce the car accidents, through establishing protocols and partnerships that allow us to implement the service on their roads and to have a closer relationship with the operational and civil protection agents.

Project activities

If you work together with external partners, list the most important partners and briefly describe their role. 
To the daily development and implementation of the service, Eurosistra Portugal has a partnership with several entities essential for the execution of the service. Such as: - The Municipalities and their Municipal Councils/City Halls, who have developed a partnership with our company and grant us a permission for acting on their roads, as well as help with the communication between our company and the civil protection; - The Civil Protection of the municipalities that support us to implement and operate the service on the roads, through activating our operation and communication with the other security agents; - The firefighters and police who activate the service on a daily basis (every time an accident occurs) and provide the necessary support for the road cleaning operations. In a time-lapse of 30 minutes Eurosistra Portugal dispatches cleaning teams to each accident on a national basis, having at the moment agreements with more than 70 Portuguese townhalls. - Specialized Waste Management Company, that collect the waste collected by Eurosistra operational teams and stored and the specific deposit for each type of waste and treated, recycled or eliminated, in accordance with the Portuguese environmental legislation in force; - And the Local Operational Centers of Eurosistra, that are spread along the Portuguese national territories, which assure the road cleaning service in their geographical area of operation and allow it to respect the 30 minutes time to reach to any road accident to which they can be called to treat.
Please describe the project activities you carried/are carrying out and the time period over which these were implemented. 
To implement the Post-Accident Road Re-establishment Service, the Eurosistra Portugal work teams take the following actions: - Contact with the Municipalities / Entities of Road Management: schedule meetings with the municipalities/entities to present the service, send the partnership proposal for evaluation and, later, organize the documents and signatures in case of establishing a partnership; - Beginning of the Service: schedule an operational meeting with civil protection officers and agents of the municipality for the presentation of operational procedures and communication with the Operational Center and with the Operational Logistics Center (OLC) of the geographic area; - Activation of the service: the process begins with a phone call from the Civil Protection of the municipality (Firefighters, Police and others) to our green number (800 218 218), which will be answered by the Operational Center of Eurosistra Portugal. Then, the nearest OLC will be sent to the locality of the accident and will arrive between 30 minutes (working days and during the day) to 45 minutes (weekends, holidays and nights); - Arrival and cleaning: on arrival, the Operational Worker waits for the indication of civil protection to start cleaning and signals the site. With the Genius machine, developed for this purpose, he will collect and/or vacuum solid and liquid waste and clean the road with the organic products. In addition, he will photograph the scene of the accident and the process of re-establishing safety conditions, crystallizing the accident, and will fill out an intervention form; - Waste treatment: storage at the Operational Logistics Center of the waste collected is then taken to specialized Waste Management Companies, where it will be treated, recycled or destroyed; - Operational Meetings: schedule of a semiannual or annual operational meeting with each municipality and/or entity with which there is a partnership, in order to identify points of improvement and clarify any doubts about the processes of the service.
List the actions you carried/are carrying out 
Wednesday, 25 May, 2022


What has been the effect of the activities? 
Within the framework of the protocols and partnerships established with the Portuguese municipalities, the semiannual or annual operational meetings aim to analyse the interventions carried out and find points of improvement in the service. Once the matter of prevention is difficult to quantify, it is not possible to obtain data on the number of accidents avoided through the Service of Road Safety Re-establishment. However, there is some data, obtained through our online platform and the report of the waste treatment company, that shows the impact of the service on road safety and environmental protection: - We work with more than 70 Portuguese municipalities; - Until today, we have carried out more than 26 800 interventions in Portugal; - We have removed more than 650 tonnes of waste from the roads; - We have a national average arrival at the place of the accident to carry out the cleaning of 28 minutes. All these data shows that we have already intervened numerous times in the road cleaning, always in good time, and have collected hundreds of tons of waste that possibly would have been on the road or in urban waste, constituting a risk factor for road safety and the environment. This fast arrival at the accident scene also allowed us to identify and report to the competent authority more than 650 Damage to the Urban Equipment. With this service it was also possible to free a lot of human resources and operational means of the Volunteer Firefighters for other rescue interventions.
Please briefly explain why your initiative is a good example of improving road safety. 
The Integrated Post-Accident Service of Eurosistra Portugal is a specialized and ecological solution that was developed to an increasing demand of the "owners of the road", due to their incapacity to assure a fast and effective reply to the need to restore the road safety after the occurrence of a car accident and the adequate treatment and removal of the waste caused by the accident, that was never been developed before. The original and specialized equipment designed for this purpose, that is protected by Patent Rights, as well as the training and instruction of operational teams, make this project innovative and revolutionary in a field that is important to pay attention and act, never forgetting the environmental concerns of nowadays. Eurosistra Portugal was established in 2012, and since May 2013, when the first agreement with a Portuguese Townhall was signed (Odivelas), it is responsible for more than 26.800 interventions of road cleaning, removing more than 650 tons of waste from the roads, making the these roads safe again and by this avoiding new accidents from occurring and saving lives. Every year, Eurosistra Portugal is expanding its services throughout the national territory, spreading a already national network, strengthening the safety of citizens who travel on the roads.
How have you shared information about your project and its results? 
Yes, visit links