Tuesday 20 September
Brake, the road safety charity, is asking all road users to play their part in the first “European Day Without A Road Death”, otherwise known as Project EDWARD, on Wednesday 21 September.
The project is supported by all 30 members of TISPOL, the European Traffic Police Network, and will highlight all the work being done by organisations to try and halve the number of road deaths in the EU by 2020.
It is hoped that Project EDWARD will encourage all road users to reflect on their behaviour and attitude, as this remains one of the most important barriers to lowering road deaths.
Brake, though, believes more can be done than just focusing on driver behaviour. Strong legislation and leadership from authorities and governments can play a much more vital part, for example the UK government bringing back casualty reduction targets, banning all mobile phone use in cars and introducing a zero tolerance drink-drive limit.
In 2015 1,732 people died on the roads in Great Britain and 22,137 more were seriously injured . A reintroduction of ambitious casualty reduction targets, axed in 2010, would be a key first step in an urgently needed fightback against road crashes, alongside a ‘vision zero’ approach that acknowledges that any road death is unacceptable.
There also needs to be more investment in safer systems to ensure that human error doesn’t cost lives, and that those who might wilfully endanger others through such acts as speeding and drink-driving are deterred by effective enforcement campaigns.
Alice Bailey, campaigns advisor for Brake, said: “Striving for zero road deaths is an ambitious but necessary long-term target. Preventable crashes tear apart families and communities and we should not accept any number. We must also acknowledge that the traffic causing these tragedies is a major contributor to carbon emissions, affecting the well-being and health of individuals and the planet. We should aspire to a world where governments, communities and companies work together to achieve zero road deaths and serious injuries, and streets that can be used without fear.”
Notes to Editors:
More on Project Edward here: https://www.tispol.org/edward
Brake is a national road safety charity, founded in 1995, that exists to stop the needless deaths and serious injuries that happen on roads every day, make streets and communities safer for everyone, and care for families bereaved and injured in road crashes. Brake promotes road safety awareness, safe and sustainable road use, and effective road safety policies. We do this through national campaigns, community education, services for road safety professionals and employers, and by coordinating the UK's flagship road safety event every November, Road Safety Week. Brake is a national, government-funded provider of support to families and individuals devastated by road death and serious injury, including through a helpline and support packs.
Road crashes are not accidents; they are devastating and preventable events, not chance mishaps. Calling them accidents undermines work to make roads safer, and can cause insult to families whose lives have been torn apart by needless casualties.