The European Commission (EC) has presented the 2017 Excellence in Road Safety Awards to five winners at a ceremony in the Romanian capital, Bucharest, with the initiatives recognized for having made a significant impact on saving lives on Europe’s roads.
The annual road safety statistics published by the EC showed that after two years of stagnation, 2016 brought a positive turn by reducing road fatalities on EU roads by 2% compared to the previous year. Even though European roads remain the safest in the world, there are still 25,500 people a year losing their lives in road crashes, and about 135,000 sustaining serious road traffic injuries.
The EC highlights three main areas where there is still room for improvement: education, enforcement, and the use of new technologies in finding new solutions to existing problems. The Commission evaluated the good practices submitted to the European Road Safety Charter Awards on this basis, and rewarded those practices that offer the most effective and innovative solutions for better road safety results.
The Awards went to:
The Heracles Group of Companies, a member of LafargeHolcim (Greece), for its ‘Good Driver’ educational project, a successful social responsibility program specifically designed for drivers of trucks and buses that aims to improve their behavior and be accountable for their safety record via an interactive campaign;
Ville de Martigues (France), for the municipality’s campaign to raise safety awareness for elderly road users;
CTT Correios de Portugal, for the national postal operator’s driver safety program;
Romanian Automobile Club, for its game-based speed awareness application aimed at children;
Motorförarnas Helnykterhetsförbund (Sweden), for its new Alco Gates automatic sobriety test technology that aims to stop drunk drivers from leaving the country’s ports.
“While road safety is our common goal, national and local actors are best placed to design solutions to meet national and local road safety challenges, through innovative measures, through tougher action against dangerous drivers and through better education and awareness-raising,” said EC Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc at the ceremony.
“The Excellence in Road Safety Award is a unique opportunity to reward the best practice, to recognize the hard work all of you are doing on a daily basis, and to raise awareness about this great project in Europe and beyond.”