|A seven-seat car collided with an ambulance in Mekong Delta Tiền Giang Province on February 13, injuring four people. — VNA/VNS Photo|
Khuất Việt Hùng, Vice President of the National Committee on Traffic Safety, talks to the Voice of Việt Nam about the number of traffic accidents in Việt Nam
What are the main factors leading to a reduction in traffic accidents in the country in 2020?
According to statistics from the Ministry of Public Security, the traffic accident rate in the five-year period from 2016-2020 compared to the previous five years has seen a 43 per cent drop in accidents, a 19.01 per cent reduction in fatalities and the injured rate also dropped by 53.91 per cent.
Last year was the first year that our national Law on Preventing and Combating the Harmful Effects of Liquor and Beer and the Decree No.100/2019/ND-CP came into effect calling on all drivers not to drink and drive.
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, transportation nationwide dropped considerably, yet the police forces still applied many measures to ensure traffic safety.
The Ministry of Transport has regularly instructed the Directorate for Roads of Việt Nam and concerned agencies nationwide have applied many specific measures to fight back against the COVID-19 while calling on all road users to practise traffic safety. As a result, in the last 10 years, traffic accidents nationwide reduced by 17.66 per cent while the injured cases reduced by 20.7 per cent and the fatality rate by 12.2 per cent (the fatality rate dropped to under 7,000 people).
What measures have the Ministry of Transport and the National Steering Committee on Traffic Safety adopted?
From 2016, all Vietnamese agencies nationwide have strictly implemented Instruction No.18 of the Party Secretariat and the Resolution 88 of the Government on road traffic safety, railways, waterways and other means of transport.
In addition, Việt Nam’s traffic infrastructure has been improved and expanded. Non-stop toll-fee stations were erected nationwide while a mass communication campaign was launched to encourage all motorbike riders wear helmets. As a result,80 per cent of motor riders wear helmets compared to 38 per cent rate in 2017.
Has the Government Decree 100 helped cut down the country’s traffic accidents significantly?
In 2019, the Law on Preventing and Combating the Harmful Effects of Liquor and Beer was promulgated and came into force on January 2020 and the Decree 100 giving sanctions on people who are drinking and driving.
The Decree 100 is a spotlight action of the Government in its current tenure.
Last year, the Public Security forces, particularly the transport police, played a pivotal role in putting the Government’s Decree 100 into life and since then the Decree has become a driving force for people nationwide to abide by traffic laws - a key factor in the reduction of traffic accidents.
How do you respond to a report saying that some statistics about the traffic safety is not really reliable?
Under the country’s Statistic Law, the Ministry of Public Security is the agency that will gather all information on transport accidents and make it available to the public. The National Steering Committee on Traffic Safety will then use the information from the Ministry of Public Security to write their reports and make those available to the public as well.
Under the Statistic Law, the Ministry of Health has the responsibility to make a report on the total injury number nationwide. However, due to different methods used in injury calculation, it leads to some disparity in the figures announced by the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Public Security.
Adding to that the number of traffic fatalities made public by the Vietnamese Government and the WHO is somehow slightly different. The main factor is that the definition of road fatality in Việt Nam is slightly different from that of the WHO. Under the Vietnamese Law, only people who are killed at the scene of the accidents are considered as accident fatality. Meanwhile, the WHO calculated the accident fatality case within 30 days from the day the accident happened.
It is reported that the Ministry of Public Security will soon make public a new regulation on road traffic accident calculation to make in line with the international law and practice. VNS