United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon announced today the appointment of Jean Todt of France as his Special Envoy for Road Safety. Mr. Todt is the president of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile.
Every year, some 1.3 million people are killed and up to 50 million people are injured on the world’s roads. Half of all road traffic deaths are among vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists. Road traffic deaths are also the leading cause of death for young people aged 15 to 29, and road traffic injuries are the eighth leading cause of death globally. Beyond human suffering, road traffic deaths and injuries impose significant economic and financial losses to societies. Low- and middle-income countries are the hardest hit. In 2010, the United Nations General Assembly proclaimed a Decade of Action for Road Safety. The goal of the Decade (2011-2020) is to stabilize and then reduce the forecast level of road traffic deaths around the world.
As Special Envoy, Mr. Todt will mobilize sustained political commitment towards road safety. He will also advocate and raise awareness about the United Nations road safety legal instruments, and share established road safety good practices, through his participation in global and regional conferences on road safety.