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Croatia makes big progress in road safety

ZAGREB, June 11 (Hina) – The number of road traffic fatalities in Croatia between 2010 and 2019 dropped by 30%, putting Croatia among the EU member states with the largest decreases, but the number of fatalities remains above the European average, the European Commission said on Thursday.

Ninety-nine people lost their lives on Croatian roads in 2010 and 73 in 2019.

In said period, seven countries recorded below-average decreases in fatality numbers, between 30% and 40% – Greece, Spain, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia and Croatia. In most other countries progress in this regard was slower.

Croatia is among eight countries which registered their lowest fatality numbers on record in 2019, from 77 in 2018 to 73 in 2019, down 6%. Luxembourg holds the record, the number of fatalities dropping 39%, from 60 in 2018 to 36 in 2019.

The safest roads were in Sweden (22 deaths/million inhabitants) and Ireland (29/million), while Romania (96/million), Bulgaria (89/million) and Poland (77/million) reported the highest fatality rates in 2019. The EU average was 51 deaths per million inhabitants.

“No deaths and serious injuries on European roads by 2050. This is our goal. We aim at 50% fewer deaths, and 50% fewer serious injuries by 2030, and we know our target is achievable,” said Transport Commissioner Adina Valean.

“We will reach our goal only through a combination of legislative measures, adequate funding, standards for vehicles and infrastructure, digitalization, and best practices exchange,” she added.

The zero deaths goal requires safer vehicles, safer infrastructure, better use of protective equipment, lower speeds and better post-crash care, the Commission said.

“The EU will work to ensure better cross-border enforcement of traffic offences, digitalise driving licences and develop new ways to help Member States with comparatively poor road safety records.”

An estimated 22,800 people died on European roads last year, almost 7,000 fewer fatalities than in 2010, a decrease of 23%. Compared with 2018, the number fell by 2%. With an average of 51 road deaths per one million inhabitants, Europe remains by far the safest region in the world when it comes to road safety.

It is estimated that, for every life lost, five more people suffer serious injuries with life-changing consequences (around 120,000 people in 2019).

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