Road Safety Engineer - CIHT Member

What is CIHT?

The Chartered Institution of Highways and Transportation (CIHT) represents over 14,000 professionals working in transport infrastructure. Renata Barnes, Senior Road Safety Engineer is a CIHT member working for Jacobs.

What is a Road Safety Engineer?

Want a career where you can help people by keeping them safe? Can you look at different kinds of information and join the dots? Are you one of life’s great problem solvers – or like the idea of learning to become one? If so, a career as a road safety engineer could be a great choice for you. As a road safety engineer, you’ll study road traffic accidents and spot trends and patterns. With this knowledge you can recommend ways to improve safety on our roads and motorways and stop people being hurt on the roads. Safety risks can come from all sorts of road users, from heavy goods vehicles to people and horses.

What does a Road Safety Engineer do?

As a road safety engineer you’ll study roads and look at ways to improve their safety. You’ll analyse statistics for road traffic collisions and spot trends and patterns. Part of your role will be to carry out reviews on highway improvement schemes to ensure that they are safe for road users. You’ll analyse data about road workers and road users to carry out risk assessments and assess if certain elements of schemes should be included. This teamed up with checking the safety of highway improvement designs ensures that they are safe for all types of road users from vehicles such as Heavy Good Vehicles (HGVs) to pedestrians and horse riders.

Is a career in road safety right for me?

Enjoy analysing data to unearth the secrets within? Want a career where you’ll help to bring about real improvements and even save lives? Want to be involved in big projects like the improvement of roads and motorways?

If this sounds like you, then a career in road safety engineering could be the answer.

How to become a Road Safety Engineer

There are many entry routes into road safety; generally you’ll need industry-recognised qualifications, which can be gained during employment with an engineering company or a local authority.

If you choose to go to university, a degree in civil engineering teamed up with some work experience will help you when applying for jobs in this industry.

You can also complete an apprenticeship in civil engineering, or you can work with an engineering company who do road safety analysis. This can lead to a role within road safety, as CIHT member Renata Barnes, an ex-athlete who now works for Jacobs as a senior road safety engineer, discovered when she worked in customer care for a Highways England Area contract and applied for a job in the Traffic & Safety team. The job offered a chance to study for a traffic engineering qualification through day-release at college, and that’s how she got started on her road safety engineering career journey!

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