Despite improvements in road safety, world still facing 'shocking' fatality figures - Ban

Road traffic in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia. Photo: Trinn Suwannapha/World Bank-121128-3923f

15 November 2015 – On the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is highlighting that despite improvements in road safety, the world still faces some shocking injury and fatality figures.

“I call on governments to tighten enforcement of laws on speeding, drinking and driving, and to mandate and enforce the use of seat-belts, motorcycle helmets and child restraints – all of which have been shown to save lives,” Mr. Ban said in a message.

The UN chief also stated that the international day “is a time to reflect on the needless tragedies that occur each day on the world's roads.”

According to the UN, road traffic accidents kill an estimated 1.25 million people each year ¬¬¬󈟆 per cent of them in middle- and low-income countries. Such accidents are the leading cause of death among young people aged between 15 and 29. Almost half of all road traffic deaths are among pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists.

Meanwhile, the Second Global High-Level Conference on Road Safety, hosted by the Government of Brazil and supported by the UN World Health Organization (WHO), is being convened this week.

Some 1500 delegates from more than 100 countries – including ministers of transport, health and interior – are expected to find ways to halve road traffic deaths and injuries by 2020 – the target set forth in the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) agreed by Member States in September.

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