Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hoà Bình, who is also Chairman of the National Traffic Safety Committee, led a meeting to review the traffic safety situation of the country in 2019 and delineate tasks for 2020 in Hà Nội on Saturday. VNA/VNS Photo Doãn Tấn
HÀ NỘI — A campaign has been launched by Deputy Prime Minister Trương Hòa Bình over the weekend to reduce road traffic accidents in the country next year.
With the theme “Don’t drink and drive”, the campaign aims to reduce traffic accidents, deaths and injuries by 5-10 per cent compared to 2019.
It highlights reducing deaths by drunk-driving as a key tactic, as next year is the first year that the Law on Prevention and Control of Harmful Effects of Alcoholic Beverages will come into effect.
Some 17,600 road accidents took place nationwide in 2019, killing about 7,600 people and injuring 13,600 others, according to the National Committee for Traffic Safety.
The campaign was launched in Hà Nội on Saturday at a conference that reviewed efforts to prevent road accidents in 2019 nationwide, with the participation of representatives from 63 provinces and cities.
Speaking at the conference, Deputy PM Bình urged the National Committee for Traffic Safety and leaders of ministries and People’s Committees to strive to achieve the traffic safety goals set out for 2020, a year that the country will witness many important events that result in higher and complicated traffic situations.
He stressed the importance of raising awareness and educating people on road safety laws and regulations, as well as on the Law on Prevention and Control of Harmful Effects of Alcoholic Beverages.
He requested traffic police impose strict fines on road safety violations in accordance with the law, especially those related to alcohol, drugs, speeding and not using helmets.
The Deputy PM also told concerned agencies to continue efforts to reduce traffic congestion and improve traffic infrastructure, as a surge in transport needs and number of vehicles has been forecast for next year.
“We need to speed up road infrastructure development projects and improve their quality, and invest in the maintenance and repair of existing infrastructure,” he said.
“The Ministry of Transport should focus on ‘black spots’, where road and rail accidents often occur, and ensure smooth traffic flow on inland and international waterways.”
The transport sector and local governments were also urged to step up information technology application in traffic management and coordination, invest more into the smart transport solutions especially in urban areas like Hà Nội and HCM City, upgrade softwares related to connecting and sharing information from vehicles' dashcams, driving licences and vehicles' registrations, and to install a sufficient network of surveillance cameras that could serve both traffic management needs and public security demands.
2019 was considered a positive year for road safety as it had the lowest road traffic deaths in the past five years (since 2014), according to statistics. It was also the first in the past five years that road traffic deaths dropped below 8,000.
Several programmes targeting the general public have been held including gifting millions of helmets for first-grade pupils and walking campaigns to promote use of helmets for children.— VNS