European facts and the Global status report on road safety 2015




By: Josephine Jackisch, Dinesh Sethi, Francesco Mitis, Tomasz Szymañski and Ian Arra
2015, iv + 15 pages
ISBN 978 92 890 5126 2
CHF 15.00/US$ 18.00
In developing countries: CHF 10.50/US$ 12.60
Order no. 13400166

In 2013, almost 85 000 people died from road-traffic injuries in the WHO European Region. Although the regional mortality rate is the lowest among WHO regions (9.3 deaths per 100 000 population), the rates of road traffic deaths vary widely in between European countries. More systematic efforts are needed if the global target of a 50% reduction in road crash deaths is to be achieved by 2020. 

This publication assesses countries' laws and practices on key risk factors – such as regulating speed appropriate to road type, drink–driving, and use of seat belts, motorcycle helmets and child restraints – for their effectiveness in reducing the risk injury. The assessment shows that many countries need to strengthen their road safety legislation and its enforcement to protect their populations, improve road users' behaviour and reduce the number of crashes. For example, while comprehensive laws on seat belts in line with best practice cover 95% of the Region's population, laws for speed adequately protect only 47%; the corresponding figures for use of helmets, against drink–driving and for use of child restraints are 45%, 33% and 71%, respectively. Much can be gained from improving the safety of vehicles, improving road infrastructure and promoting sustainable, physically active forms of mobility as alternatives to car use. Concerted policy efforts with safe systems approaches are needed to protect all road users in the Region.