Traffic accidents kill more and more people around the world, with 1.35 million deaths per year, warned WHO Friday, concerned about the lack of implementation of security measures in poor countries.
In its World Report on Road Safety, the World Health Organization (WHO) also states that traffic accidents are currently the leading cause of death among children and young people from 5 to 29 years.
In recent years, the total number of deaths recorded on roads in the world has increased steadily, with 1.35 million deaths recorded in the report on 2018, while the WHO had accounted for more than 1.2 million deaths in a report published in 2009.
“These deaths represent an unacceptable price for mobility,” WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement. “There is no excuse for passivity, and this report is a call to governments and their partners to take much more important measures,” he added.
WHO is pleased, however, that “mortality rates in relation to the size of the world population have stabilized in recent years,” suggesting that “efforts in road safety in some middle and high income countries They have mitigated the situation. ”
Experts attribute these successes largely to better legislation related to the main road risks, such as speed, alcohol consumption, (poor) driving, and the absence of safety belts, motorcyclist helmets or child seats.
The WHO also highlights the importance of having safer infrastructures, such as pavements and lanes reserved for cyclists and motorcyclists, as well as reinforcing the safety conditions of vehicles, such as electronic stability control and braking.
While the situation has improved in rich countries, the number of road deaths has not fallen in a single country with low incomes, mainly due to the lack of measures to improve security, according to the report.
The risk of death on the road continues to be three times higher in poor countries than in richer ones, with the highest mortality rates in Africa (26.6 per 100,000 inhabitants), and the lowest in Europe (9, 3 per 100,000 inhabitants).
Since the last edition of the WHO report, three years ago, three regions of the world have experienced a fall in road mortality rates: America, Europe and the Western Pacific. The greatest reduction was registered in this last region