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Deaths Due to Road Accidents

  • 08 May 2019
  • 2 min read

According to a World Health Organisation (WHO) report (released during global road safety week), road accidents are the leading cause of death among people in the 5-29 age-group worldwide with more than 1.35 million lives lost each year and 50 million sustaining injuries.

Key Facts

  • Road traffic injuries are the 8th leading cause of deaths and 1st cause of death among children and young adults aged 5-29 years.
  • Reasons include rapid urbanisation, poor safety, lack of proper enforcement of laws, influence of drugs or alcohol, speeding and failure to wear seat-belts or helmets.
  • Specific to India: As per the data released by the Indian government, road crashes kill close to 1,50,000 people each year.
  • Impact: Achieving Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) target 3.6 that calls for a 50% reduction in the number of road traffic deaths by 2020, would become difficult.
  • Solution: Strong political will and leadership is necessary to address this issue. For instance,
    • Government can ensure adequate funding for road safety by passing required laws.
    • UN and other international agencies can draw attention to the road safety crisis and can also ensure that road safety actions are a part of programmes on child and adolescent health, sustainable mobility etc.
    • Parents, teachers, students, employees and volunteers can highlight specific risks on the road and demand concrete measures to address them.

UN Global Road Safety Week

  • Celebrated every two years, the fifth edition of the UN Global Road Safety Week (6-12 May 2019) highlights the need for strong leadership for road safety.
  • The year 2007 marked the first United Nations Global Road Safety Week.
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