Parliamentarians worldwide are being urged to support a new manifesto, which has been launched to highlight the measures that can be taken to improve road safety across the globe.
Released to mark the start of the 2017 UN Global Road Safety Week, the #4RoadSafety manifesto has already been adopted by the Leadership Council of the Global Network for Road Safety Legislators – a cross party group of senior MPs from 15 different countries, including the UK.
The MPs warn that on present trends it is unlikely that the UN’s aim to halve road deaths by 2020 will be reached, describing this as ‘a tragic missed opportunity to apply known and effective policies to make roads safe’.
Launched in London on 8 May, #4RoadSafety sets out 10 key recommendations to encourage parliamentarians to support the current United Nation’s Decade of Action for Road Safety (2011-2020).
The manifesto also endorses a new ‘save lives’ package of road injury prevention measures issued by the World Health Organisation (WHO). The package urges all UN Member States to adopt laws to tackle speeding, drink driving, non-use of motorcycle helmets, seat belts and child restraints, and the application of acceptable vehicle and road safety construction standards.
#4RoadSafety also includes recommendations covering speed management and the ‘Safe System’ approach, occupational road safety, good governance and funding for road injury prevention. It also proposes a new UN target for road safety in 2030.
Barry Sheerman, chairman of the Global Network for Road Safety Legislators, said: “With a UN target to halve road deaths by 2020 there has never been a stronger mandate for all countries to take action to stop the appalling daily carnage on our roads.
“Despite rising motorisation, better national road safety policies have helped to slow the rise in global road fatalities.
“To meet the UN target much more needs to be done and parliamentarians worldwide can play a decisive role by supporting our manifesto and the adoption and enforcement of laws that will make roads safe”.
Liz Brooker MBE, vice-chair of Road Safety GB, who attended the launch said: "At the end of the event I asked how Road Safety GB – as a local authority membership organisation representing well-trained and professional people working in road safety education – can help and support the campaign to reduce global road deaths?
"The answer was that we are being observed by many of the countries that have major road casualty and collision issues, that what we do is being adapted and deployed in other places, and that this is of significant benefit to the countries in greatest need of support."
*The launch event took place at the Institute for Mechanical Engineers, London on 8 May, and included speeches from HRH Prince Michael of Kent, patron of the Towards Zero Foundation, and Lord Robertson of Port Ellen, chairman of the FIA Foundation.