Road Safety Initiatives

The World Day of Remembrance (for the Victims of Road Traffic Collisions) is held on the third Sunday in November, each year.
Initiated by RoadPeace in 1993, this day is being observed in more countries and on more continents each year. In the UK, religious services and secular events will take place, and the RoadPeace annual concert will be held at the Amadeus Centre, London W9, on 18 November, 2005, at 7pm, in memory of all road crash victims. See pdf leaflet about the history of World Day and the list of UK Special Remembrance Services for road crash victims.
Other details are available from the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims (available in English, French, German, Italian and Dutch) plus the Association nationale des Victimes de la Route website (from Luxemburg, in French, and different to the above).

“Vision Zero” — from Concept to Action — a Safe Road Traffic Concept (Sweden)

January 1, 2005: Death Tolls and Targets in New Zealand
Four-hundred and thirty-five people died on New Zealand roads in 2004 – 26 fewer than in 2003 but seven percent more than in 2002, when the road toll reached a 40-year low of 405.
More than 34,000 people have been killed on the road since New Zealand’s first known fatal crash in Christchurch in 1908. The deadliest year on our roads was 1973, when 843 were killed.
There have been nearly 5,000 deaths and 137,000 injuries from crashes on our roads over the past 10 years.
As recently as 1990 there were 729 road deaths in New Zealand. Since then annual road deaths have dropped by 40 percent, in spite of a 33 percent increase in the number of vehicles on the road and a 19 percent increase in population.
Government has set a target of no more than 300 road deaths and no more than 4,500 hospitalisations per year by 2010. [DSA note: Even if based on 2002’s low figures, this represents a targeted reduction of 26 per cent.]
Preliminary analysis shows that driving too fast for the conditions and drink-driving were the two biggest factors in fatal crashes last year, with excessive speed a factor in 35 percent and drink-driving contributing to 30 percent. Twenty-three percent of the vehicle occupants killed last year were not wearing seatbelts.
[Source: LTSA]

GLOBAL December 16, 2004: Global Road Safety Partnership International Project
GENEVA – Seven of the world’s largest auto and oil companies today announced a collaborative five-year, $10 million project to reduce road traffic fatalities in developing countries.
The World Health Organization projects that road traffic incidents will become the third leading cause of injury/disease globally by 2020. Unless steps are taken to improve road traffic safety, fatalities and injuries will likely increase by 65% from 1.2 million deaths and 50 million injuries globally today.
The initiative, to be implemented by the Global Road Safety Partnership (GRSP), hosted by the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC), will focus on such key road safety themes as pedestrian safety and safety belt use, the training of road safety professionals in developing countries, and provision of seed money to support pilot programs to improve road safety in these countries….
Full details here.

November 30, 2004: Road Safety Feedback Sought from Young Australians
New South Wales Roads Minister Carl Scully has urged young people to read an options paper on ways to improve safety for young drivers, and send their comments to the Roads and Traffic Authority (RTA).
Mr Scully launched the discussion paper yesterday at a school road safety forum held for senior students at the Illawarra Sports High School at Berkeley.
The paper canvases 11 different options including increased driver training, a limit on the number of passengers in cars, driving curfews and prohibiting “P” plate drivers from driving high powered cars….
Read the full article. [Source: ABC News]

Or go directly to the Improving Safety for Young Drivers web page of the Roads and Traffic Authority, NSW.

DSA Comments: We would suggest that the RTA document is one of the best initiatives we have seen.

ASEAN November 23, 2004: Phnom Penh Ministerial Declaration on ASEAN Road Safety
We, the ASEAN Transport Ministers, gathered in Phnom Penh , Cambodia on 23rd November 2004 for the Tenth ASEAN Transport Ministers (ATM) Meeting;
Expressing great concern that the road safety problem in the ASEAN region has reached alarming proportion, with over 75,000 deaths and 4.7 million injuries occurring annually, causing very serious physical, psychological and material harm to the victims and their families, as well as on the huge economic loss of over US$ 15 billion each year (2.2% of annual Gross Domestic Product) to the ASEAN region as a whole;
Conscious that failure to take effective actions will result in a further 385,000 deaths, 24 million injuries and economic losses of over US$ 88 billion over the next five (5) years…..
Read the full objectives and declaration, here

October 14, 2004: French President Jaques Chirac is Awarded The First FIA World Prize for Road Safety
The first FIA World Prize for Road Safety, the Environment and Mobility has been awarded to the President of the French Republic, Jacques Chirac….
For many years the road safety situation in France was disturbing. The numbers killed and injured was significantly higher than in some neighbouring countries. Then in 2002 something changed. In his Bastille Day address President Chirac announced that road safety was one of the top priorities of his new Presidential term. Road safety is not traditionally a subject that Heads of State make a major theme of one of their most important speeches of the year. But President Chirac did just that. And he encouraged his Ministry of Transport, the police, public authorities and above all the French people to take action to promote road safety.
In 2002, 7400 people died on the roads in France. Two years later, the number has dropped to 4900. President Chirac’s initiative has resulted in an unprecedented 20% reduction in road traffic deaths….
Full story here.

May 26, 2004: Cutting Road Deaths in Europe by Fifty Percent
At their Council meeting in Bucharest in 2002, ECMT Ministers made a commitment to achieve a 50 per cent reduction in deaths from road accidents over the period 2000 to 2012.
At the Ljubljana session, on 25-26 May 2004, Ministers approved the proposed procedure for for monitoring progress in meeting this objective.
Press release here

See also: European Road Safety Action Programme — Halving the number of road accident victims in the European Union by 2010 : A shared responsibility (click here)

May 20, 2004: Tomorrow’s Roads — Safer for Everyone: The First Three Year Review
“Britain has one of the best road safety records in the world. It is one that many others strive to match. But we have never been complacent. In March 2000 the road safety strategy Tomorrow’s roads – safer for everyone, published jointly by the UK Government, the Scottish Executive and the National Assembly for Wales, established challenging casualty reduction targets to be achieved by 2010.”
This report summarizes progress to date

World Road Safety Day
April 7, 2004
Every day, more than 3000 people worldwide die as a result of motor vehicle related injuries and many more are seriously injured. For the first time ever, World Health Day, April 7, 2004, will have the theme “Road Safety.”

According to the AAA, there are five ways you can take part in World Health Day as an individual:
1. Wear your seat belt no matter where you are seated in the vehicle. If you are driving, be alert for pedestrians and cyclists!
2. Take the brief AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety online quiz, “Seat Belts: Do you buckle up as often as you should?”
3. Downloadable World Health Day posters in English and Spanish, along with links to other WHD events are available at www.aaapublicaffairs.com
4. Wear a ‘Lectric Lime ribbon on April 7 to celebrate the gains we have made and how much more we can still do in preventing traffic injuries and deaths. (‘Lectric Lime green is a visible color used in signage and by the students in the AAA School Safety Patrol.)
5. Watch the next broadcast of Public Health Grand Rounds, “On the Road Again: Promoting Safe Travel and the Public’s Health,” scheduled to air March 26, at 2:00pm EST. Go to www.PublicHealthGrandRounds.unc.edu Registration and evaluation allow CDC and UNC to measure the impact of this program and receive funding to offer this series at no cost to the viewer.

Click here or on the logo to go to the DSA World Road Safety Day web page
Click here to view the WHO
Road Safety Initiatives page
People and organizations around the world are going to participate in this remarkable event and here, at Drive And Stay Alive, we are creating a web page especially to show the diversity and scale of these ways in which the global epidemic of unnecessary death is being tackled. Click here.

April, 2004: CCMTA’s Road Safety Vision 2010 is “a national effort at making Canada’s roads the safest in the
world, and its road safety targets were officially endorsed by all Ministers Responsible for Transportation and Highway Safety in the fall of 2000. The Vision provides Canada’s road safety community with benchmarks against which to develop new strategies and measure intervention efforts.” Full article here, plus more details.

April, 2004: Advertising has both fans and critics when used as a road safety
educational tool, but in Britain the “Think!” campaign has used it to great effect.

Click here (or on picture) to view an article about effective advertising. (Courtesy of LARSOA newsfeed)

In Australia, a SMART car isn’t one of those tiny, town cars from the Mercedes camp, it’s a high-visibility police
patrol car, it’s a Specially Marked Anti Road Toll.

The cars are used to increase police visibility on Victoria state roads, in areas where collision rates were high. They are often used in conjunction with two or thee others to create the illusion that the police are everywhere and that anyone breaking the law will be booked. The officers involved say that it has been an eye opening experience and also — interestingly — a good public relations exercise.

See also the DSA page about patrol cars and conspicuity: click here.

Click on picture for larger image.
Photograph copyright and courtesy of
Acting Senior Sergeant Clint Wilson

January 2004: Targeting Highway Fatalities in the USA
During calendar year 2002, a total of 42,815 deaths occurred on highways in the United States. Reducing this terrible toll is the top priority of the United States Department of Transportation (USDOT), and the FHWA is advancing a set of strategic objectives and strategies in partnership with other USDOT agencies. Nationally, the FHWA is focused on reducing the number and severity of crashes relating to situations which result in the largest number of deaths – namely: roadway departure crashes, intersection crashes, and pedestrian deaths.
Similar to this approach at the national level, we strongly encourage States and localities to strategically direct their resources to areas of highest priority in terms of lives lost. The maps included below provide a snapshot of these figures from the year 2002 (sources are the Fatality Analysis Reporting System. Users are also encouraged to review other key state-by-state indicators such as safety belt use and alcohol-involved fatalities, as maintained by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Number of Highway Fatalities – 2002
Fatality Rate – 2002
Roadway Departure Fatalities – 2002
% Fatalities: Roadway Departure – 2002
Number of Intersection Fatalities – 2002
% Fatalities: Intersections – 2002
Number of Pedestrian Fatalities – 2002
% Fatalities: Pedestrian 2002
Number of Work Zone Fatalities – 2002
% Fatalities in Work Zones – 2002

January 2004: Traffic accidents are on the decline in Greece, but the new vigilance must be maintained.
Faced with an escalating number of smash-ups and unnecessary deaths, Greek officials resolved, in 2000, to make a U-turn in the nation’s disheartening traffic safety record. After extensive research… an Inter-ministerial Committee on Road Safety was formed in June 2001 to implement a new strategy and to reverse long-standing negative trends.
Now, over three years into the government’s anti-collision campaign, Greece has witnessed its first sustained period of systematic reductions in traffic accidents and fatalities.
Entitled On the Road 2001-2005, the ongoing programme has set lofty but necessary goals to reduce the number of traffic fatalities by 20% in the period between 2001 and 2005 and by 40% by 2015. Priority areas for the campaign include construction of driver-friendly infrastructure, better enforcement against violations leading to accidents (such as speeding and drunk driving) as well as improved driver training.
Full report, from Greece Now.

September 2003: The Ford Motor Company, and the Governors’ Highway Safety Association have teamed up to
focus on the issue of safe teen driving by promoting their Real World Driver: Driving Skills for Life program to principals of all 20,000 public high schools in the USA. Click here for the Ford press release, and here for the Real World Driver website.

March 2003: In Pennsylvania, the Department of Transport (PENNDOT) has teamed up with dozens of local
police officers to take a more pro-active role to keep teenage drivers safe behind the wheel. The initiative, called “Survival 101,” is designed to reduce aggressive driving, speeding and impaired driving, and encourage seatbelt use by using graphic slides to show what happens to vehicles — and the human body — during a crash. Read the full article on the KDKA website.

UK Department for Transport Road Safety Policy Update, September 2003

Road Safety in Norway Strategy 2002–2011
This English summary of the Road Safety Strategy 2002-2011 takes into account divergent views of the Parliament (in the period 1997-2001) and the Government in office in the area of road safety. The summary also includes necessary updates; e.g. dates onto which regulations enter into force. September 2002
Click here to view the index page.

NORWAY CREDITS ‘SPEAK OUT!’ CAMPAIGN WITH DROP IN TEENAGE TRAFFIC DEATHS
A traffic safety campaign in Norway, called “Speak Out!,” has been credited with leading to a 30 percent reduction in the annual number of killed or injured car passengers between the ages of 16 and 19.
The campaign was launched in 1993 and gradually became more intense. It appeals to car passengers to speak out about dangerous driving by telling drivers to drive more carefully.
The campaign consists of a combination of information and enforcement. Information is given in schools, while enforcement generally takes the form of roadside checks carried out jointly by the police and officials of Norway’s Public Roads Administration.
While road safety campaigns don’t always work, Norway’s Institute of Transport Economics says that factors found in “Speak Out!” characterize successful campaigns. They are a clearly defined target group, simple message, and long-term effort – the campaign is in its 7th year. It also includes police enforcement, a high media profile, and appeals to the self interest of teenagers in avoiding personal injury. The campaign does not preach morals or use scare propaganda.
For more information: Harald Aas, Norway Institute of Transport Economics, Tel: 47 22 57 38 00, Fax: 47 22 57 02 90, Email: harald.aas@toi.no. (Source: Nordic Road & Transport Research)

The Canadian Council of Motor Transport Administrators (CCMTA) — Road Safety Vision, 2010

Northern Ireland issued a consultation document regarding Road Safety Strategy 2001-2010.