First publishedon www.ITSInternational.com
A three-point plan to help countries reduce road deaths and serious injuries has been unveiled at the International Transport Forum
(ITF) in Leipzig, Germany. The keynote address by Prince Michael of Kent, a member of the UK’s royal family, was presented to transport ministers at a summit focused on transport safety and security.
Outside of the ITF, Prince Michael is known for establishing an award scheme that recognises innovation in road safety worldwide.
Speaking upon the UN Sustainable Development Goals to halve road deaths and injuries by 2020, he said:
“Unfortunately, it is clear now that this will not be achieved. Worse still, if present trends continue, the World Bank has forecast that by 2030 another 21.7 million deaths and 875.7 million injuries will occur on the world’s roads.”
Going forward, he recommended a new UN road safety target will help get the goals back on track.
“The serious risk is that, without a new casualty reduction target, the road safety performance of UN member states will be weakly measured and consequently poorly managed,” he added.
The second proposal involves mobilising new resources to finance road injury prevention programmes. Prince Michael is pleased the UK has served a contributor of the World Bank’s global road safety facility, “but now is the time for other countries to come forward and become new donors to the cause”.
Thirdly, Prince Michael stressed a much stronger political commitment to road safety is necessary. He welcomed the Towards Zero Foundation’s decision to establish the Global Network for Road Safety Legislators which aims to encourage parliamentarians to share best practice in road safety legislation and policies.
“Political engagement like this will be a ‘sine qua non’ of effective road injury prevention in the decade to 2030.”
To conclude, Prince Michael advised transport ministers to consider what is at stake between now and 2030.
“Think of the lives that will be lost, the families shattered, and the tragic waste from another twenty million or more road fatalities.”
A full copy of the speech is available here.