Road dust and air quality in Sweden


During the last years it has become evident that wear particles from road pavements, tires, brakes, and road maintenance strongly contribute to episodes with very high concentration of inhalable particles (PM10) in outdoor air. These episodes normally occur during dry periods in winter and spring when accelerated wear and particle production occurs due to the use of studded tires and winter gritting. A lot of new knowledge about wear particles is needed in order to develop cost-efficient measures to deal with them. A great advantage is the possibility to study aerosols from each source both separately and in different combination in a controlled environment. At VTI (Swedish National Road and Transport Research Institute) a road simulator, previously used for pavement and tire wear studies, is used as a wear particle generator. Measurements of PM10 in the road simulator hall have been used to study the influence of pavement properties, tire type, and vehicle speed on pavement wear. In several cities in Sweden, different winter maintenance chemicals (e.g., calcium magnesium acetate and magnesium chloride) have recently started to be used as dustbinders in springtime in order to abate the dust problem. Also other measures aiming at abating road dust concentrations are under way, including reduced studded tire use and speed reductions. In this paper compilations of results from several recent research projects and field case studies will be presented. Different pavements, tires, winter maintenance abrasive material, as well as measures like reduced studded tire wear and chemical dustbinding are discussed.



Vision Zero for Sustainable Road Safety in the Baltic Sea Region

The conference Vision Zero for Sustainable Road Safety in the Baltic Sea Region is held i Vilnius, Lithuania. VTI is part of the organisation committé and also one of the speakers.



EU project protects cyclists and pedestrians

According to the World Health Organisation, more than one quarter of road traffic fatalities in 2010 were pedestrians and cyclists. Every year, about 335,000 unprotected road users die because of traffic accidents, which shows the scale of the problem. The EU...


Swedish organisations in EU project on traffic safety and crash testing

Crash safety testing is one of the tools used to improve safety on roads. The EU is therefore funding a research project that started recently to develop virtual methods of crash testing. The long-term goal is to supplement the physical evaluation of crash...


International Conference on Electric Road Systems starts today

Electric Road Systems (ERS) is a relatively new concept with many initiatives on the way. To learn from each other and stimulate new collaborations the Swedish Research and Innovation Platform for Electric Roads arranged the first international conference...


Same survey of road users’ attitudes in 50 countries

At the Road Safety on Five Continents Conference, RS5C, one entire session presented a large survey of road users' attitudes in 38 countries. Results show large differences between countries in many areas, both regarding behavior and attitudes. A new survey...


Good results with alcohol interlock program according to Swedish study

An alcohol interlock program makes it possible for drink driving offenders to continue their everyday lives. In a Swedish study most of the participants were satisfied with the program and experienced improved health. They also reported drinking alcohol more...


Traffic safety in the spotlight

Today the Conference Road Safety on Five Continents (RS5C) opened in Jeju Island, South Korea. More than 220 participators have come from all over the world to present findings and learn about traffic safety. Dr. Young Tae Kim, Secretary-General of the...