In 2015, Latvia experienced some of the highest indexes in the European Union in terms of the number of deaths that were caused by road traffic accidents, according to information published by the European Commission.
Provisional statistical data shows that the number of deaths per 1 million residents in Latvia was 94 in 2015, which is a slight decrease in comparison with 2014 (106). Results for 2010 were 103 dead per 1 million residents, as reported by European Commission’s representation in Latvia.
Compared with 2014, Latvia’s statistical indexes for the number of deaths caused by road traffic accidents have improved 11%. Over the course between 2010 and 2015, the proportion of deaths had decreased 14%.
Lithuania and Estonia both have better results in this area – 50 dead per 1 million in Estonia and 82 dead per 1 million in Lithuania.
Latvia statistical data compiled for the number of deaths caused by road traffic accidents is better than that of Bulgaria and Romania, where 95 deaths per 1 million residents were registered in 2015.
Estonia and Ireland have both experienced a decline in the number of deaths – 15%. Respectively, 50 people died in road traffic accidents in Estonia and 36 – in Ireland. The biggest increase has been noted in Finland – 15% (48 people per 1 million residents). The situation seems to be the safest in Malta, Sweden and Netherlands, where only 26, 27 and 28 deaths per 1 million residents were registered in 2015.
Last year, in comparison with 2014, the number of deaths in EU member states had decreased by 1% in total.
The average index for the EU is 51.5 people per 1 million residents.
Last year, a total of 26,000 people had lost their lives on roads across the EU. 135,000 people were injured as a result of road traffic accidents. Social costs paid for road traffic accidents with lethal outcome and serious injuries were at least equal to EUR 100 billion.
It is also mentioned in European Commission’s report that Europe’s roads remain the safest in the world in spite of the many road accidents that still take place from time to time.
Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc notes that every death and every injury is a tragedy that should have been prevented. ‘We have received impressive results over the past decade. This has allowed us to reduce the number of deaths in road traffic accidents. Nevertheless, the situation remains worrying. If Europe wishes to reduce the number of deaths in road traffic accidents by half by 2020, there is still much work to be done. I urge member states to increase efforts to realize legislative measures and organize campaigns. This, of course, requires funds. However, that is insignificant when compared with social costs ranging in hundred billion euros that appear as a result of injuries and deaths caused by road traffic accidents,’ – said the commissioner.
EC continues monitoring the situation very closely. Member states are urged to speed up approval of new legislative initiatives and share experience, knowledge and advice in combating this problem. Technological accomplishments of the last decade have improved the safety of roads in Europe considerably.
In order to open the way for better traffic management and gradual automation of this process, EC plans to develop general guidelines for the introduction of an intellectual transport system, which would provide two-way communication between transports and road infrastructure.