Russia takes lead on global road safety initiatives
Around half of those killed in these accidents are pedestrians,
cyclists or motorcyclists. The impact on families and society is
devastating. Strategies exist that are proven to reduce road
traffic injures and, through their implementation, a number of
countries have successfully taken steps to reduce their rod traffic
Russia is among those countries that have worked successfully to cope with the problem, reducing the number of deaths and injures and becoming active in promoting road safety on the international stage.
In November 2009, Russia hosted the first Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Moscow, which led to the adoption of a resolution by the UN General Assembly in 2010. Sponsored by Russia and many other countries, this resolution later led to the approval of the international ‘Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020,’ designed to tackle what it described as “a major public health problem which, if unaddressed, may affect the sustainable development of countries and hinder the progress towards the Millennium Development Goals.”
The importance of reducing road injures was also recognized in
the Rio+20 Communique ‘The Future We Want,’ which followed the
Russian proposal at the summit.
Russia is also an active member of the Commission for Global
Road Safety, which has been a leading advocate for a stronger
international response to the global plague of road traffic
On May 7, 2013, Russia will host another major road safety event
in St. Petersburg: The ‘Decade of Action Policy & Donor Forum
2013: Safe Roads for All.’ It is an annual event that brings
together international policymakers, philanthropies, NGOs and
private-sector companies to review the progress of the UN’s ‘Decade
of Action for Road Safety,’ and to share international examples of
best practices. The meeting summit will review the policies and
interventions that major emerging economies – including the BRICS
nations – can use to ensure the safety of all travelers in an age
of rapid motorization.
A new report will be published at this meeting by the Commission for Global Road Safety, and will include policy recommendations for the automotive industry. Issues to be also covered include safer road infrastructure, vehicle crash testing programs, new vehicle technologies, pedestrian safety measures and a post-2015 sustainable development agenda.
Though there are clear sign of improvement in this sphere, some
reports, including by the WHO, show that road death injury
continues to increase in some countries. It is now vitally
important to maintain the momentum and positive trends, like those
we have in Russia, to build up our countermeasures against this
Russia’s St. Petersburg summit will be another opportunity to do
just that ahead of the ‘Friends of the Decade’ gathering of
governments, UN agencies and leading road safety NGOs in Stockholm
in June 2013.
The statements, views and opinions expressed in this column are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of RT.