Since 2005, HEAL staff and students have been contributing their research and evaluation expertise to local and regional collaborations aimed at making roads safer for people of all ages, especially children. The HEAL team has served important volunteer roles on community organizations such as Active & Safe Routes to School (Elgin, London, Middlesex, Oxford) and the London-Middlesex Road Safety Committee.
The HEAL team has also provided their expertise to key stakeholder organizations such as the Middlesex-London Health Unit, the City of London Engineering Department, and the Trauma program at the London Health Sciences Centre, as consultants on projects related to monitoring and mapping pedestrian and vehicular traffic flow, mapping and evaluating hotspot areas of motor vehicle collisions (MVCs), and evaluating health promotion efforts to reduce distracted driving and improve road safety.
HEAL members Dr. Jason Gilliland (Director) and Dr. Andrew Clark (Senior Project Coordinator) have also delivered many presentations to public, governmental and academic audiences on the issue of active, safe, and sustainable transportation.
In 2020, a multi-disciplinary team of researchers and practitioners led by Dr Jason Gilliland and Dr. Doug Fraser (Dept of Paediatrics) were awarded funding from the Translational Research Grant Fund (TRGF) competition for a 2-year project titled “Vision Zero: Comprehensive Review of Data to Support London’s Commitment to Eliminate Severe Injury Crashes and Fatalities in Children and Adolescents”.
The TRGF program is designed to foster partnerships between the clinicians of Western’s Department of Paediatrics and the Scientists of the Children’s Health Research Institute. In this project, the team is examining key environmental features of high frequency or ‘hotspot’ crash locations and how they are contributing to crashes involving children and adolescents treated at Children’s Hospital at LHSC.
An aim of this critical analysis is to provide recommendations for the reinvention of the system-wide design of the roadways and built environment practices, programs, polices and laws to decrease the severity of collisions and ultimately prevent serious injury and death on our roads.
Stay tuned for project updates!