Today, the World Health Organization is kicking off the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030, with the ambitious target of preventing at least 50% of road traffic deaths and injuries by 2030.
As things stand, they are set to cause a further estimated 13 million deaths and 500 million injuries during the next decade, particularly in low- and middle-income countries.
These unacceptable numbers, both in absolute and relative terms. Road traffic crashes have remained a major cause of death globally, even though every one of those deaths and injuries is preventable.
‘The loss of lives and livelihoods, the disabilities caused, the grief and pain, and the financial costs caused by road traffic crashes add up to an intolerable toll on families, communities, societies and health systems,’ said Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General.
‘So much of this suffering is preventable, by making roads and vehicles safer, and by promoting safe walking, cycling and greater use of public transport. The Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety lays out the practical, evidence-based steps all countries and communities can take to save lives.’
‘More than 50 million people have died on the world’s roads since the invention of the automobile. This is more than the number of deaths in World War One or some of the worst epidemics.’ says Dr Etienne Krug, the Director of the Department of the Social Determinants of Health.