This year sees the end of the Decade of Action for Road Safety that was launched by the UN in 2011 and was adopted in more than 100 countries across the globe, seeking to save millions of lives and lay the foundations for a safer future for countless communities and individuals.
The initiative set out to achieve better safety management capacity, improved safety infrastructure with a view to developing safer vehicles, encourage and enhance best safety practices by the individual, and outline monitoring and evaluation techniques to measure the success of such improvements.
To mark the occasion, the Swedish Minister of Infrastructure hosted the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm from 19-29 February 2020, where 1,700 delegates from 140 countries were able to share their experiences and lessons learned from around the world. With a further ten years remaining until the UN Sustainable Development Goals target date comes around, this was a significant date in the calendar for all related institutions and stakeholders. Reflecting on the last ten years allows us to optimise road safety actions for the next decade, expanding on the success stories, and reflecting on lessons learned.
ReCAP has undertaken various research projects on road safety including the regional project on Enhancing the understanding on safe motorcycle and three-wheeler use for rural transport, implemented among others by Amend, a road safety NGO that operates across sub-Saharan Africa. Tom Bishop, Programme Director at Amend, attended the Ministerial Conference and was a panellist during the session on the Safety of Powered Two-Wheelers, showcasing findings from the ReCAP research on motorcycle safety as well as other Amend projects.
Other panellists during the session included the Special Advisor for Road Safety at FIA, President of the International Motorcycle Manufacturers Association, and the Executive Secretary of the National Road Safety Commission in Chile.
The session was seen as a great success, with ample attendance and some thoughtful discussion. Joy Kabatsi, Uganda's Minister of State for Transport, attended and shared news about a recent injection of Bloomberg funding for road safety in Uganda. A number of delegates from South America showed concern toward motorcycle use. Data and lessons learned from African countries (by Amend and ReCAP for example), can and should be considered by other nations, even as far as Brazil, or Columbia. A wonderful example here of why these conferences are invaluable platforms in knowledge sharing.
The Stockholm Declaration is the overall outcome of the conference and was presented by the Swedish Minister for Infrastructure, Tomas Eneroth. This ambitious and forward-looking statement connects road safety to achieving the global goals and implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and supports the road safety sector's ambitious but achievable target of '50 by 30' - 50% reduction in deaths and serious injury by 2030.