Accident black spots

An Ulster University student’s idea could help identify accident black spots on Northern Ireland’s roads and lower accident rates.

An Ulster University student’s idea could help identify accident black spots on Northern Ireland’s roads and lower accident rates around public buildings.

Aidan Higgins, from Maghera, an MSc student in Geographic Information Systems (GIS), School of Environmental Sciences at Ulster University combined road collision data from the Police Service of Northern Ireland with the road network of Northern Ireland. Then, using address information, it was possible to highlight the most dangerous areas around public buildings, such as schools and hospitals.

His idea has been chosen as the winning design in a competition run by the Department of Finance and Personnel in conjunction with the Ordnance Survey of Northern Ireland.

The so-called ‘Geo-Mashup’ competition was open to all students in Northern Ireland who were able to merge geographic information with other data. The winning idea needed to benefit the public and be potentially marketable.

Aidan Higgins with Iain Greenway, CEO Ordnance Survey of Northern Ireland, Mark Bennett , DFP and Séamus Gilroy, 1Spatial

‘Every week we hear of collisions on our roads and I was very interested in using GIS with the collision data to analyse and view trends across Northern Ireland. I would like to develop the idea as lives could be saved if people know about dangerous roads,’ said Higgins.

He will now undertake a week’s consultancy with 1Spatial, an international GIS consultancy, to develop his idea further.