Background. For a long time, the risk was studied mainly as an attribute of technology and the likelihood of certain damage in quantitative terms. Over time, the emphasis shifted to qualitative indicators, which allowed to take into account the human factor, i.e. human behavior in an emergency. Despite the fact that this phenomenon is fairly well understood, there is no general interpretation of the definition of risk. Each discipline studies various aspects of this concept. The purpose of this article is to examine the theoretical and methodological approaches used in the study of the concept of “risks”, as well as the interpretation of this category relative to the road transport system, not only in terms of technical indicators, but also behavioral of all road users.
Materials and methods. The theoretical and methodological base of the research was compiled by the works of foreign and domestic sociologists who studied various aspects of the concept of risk, namely, W. Beck, E. Giddens, N. Luhmann, M. Douglas, A. Wildawski, K. Dyke, O. Renn, B. Fox, J. Atkinson, S. A. Kravchenko, O. Yanitsky, A. V. Mozgovaya, A. A. Zubok and others. According to the author’s position, the sociological analysis of the “risk” category regarding the road transport system can be most fully carried out through the prism of the behavioral approach to N. Luhmann’s risk. The risk is discussed in those cases when a decision can be made, the consequences of which carry risks. When studying risk, N. Luhmann identifies two distinctions that are not opposed to each other: risk / reliability (meaning the risk dimension) and risk / risk (associated with a decision that includes the potential for damage).
Results and conclusions. Under the risk it is suggested to understand the actions of road transport system participants, which entail a reduction of its safety. The author’s classification of types of risks in the road transport system is given, which includes
technological (technical equipment of the vehicle, condition of the road transport system, climatic conditions, technical condition of the vehicle), transport (traffic intensity, presence / absence of congestion, , the speed of movement of vehicles), legal (administrative sanctions and their effectiveness, violation of traffic rules by its participants, the ratio of and social) (social interaction of participants in the road transport system, the social portrait of the driver, the level of conflictual communication) risks. For a long time in the scientific literature technological risks were brought to the fore. The reduction and minimization of their consequences were considered as the basis for ensuring the safety of the road transport system. However, at the present time, technogenic risks have given way to sociocultural leadership. Factors such as public opinion, cultural and ethical norms and values, informal regulators,
and the behavior of reference groups are beginning to gain in importance.
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