Road traffic accidents: A Truly Global Risk
Every year around 1.24 million people are killed in road traffic accidents. Put another way, someone is killed or seriously injured on the world’s roads every six seconds. Unquestionably, the most likely risk of injury or death for those operating globally doesn’t come from terrorism, political violence, war, etc. — but instead the road traffic accident. This is especially true in low to middle income countries, which account for 92% of road traffic accident fatalities.1 But the risk isn’t limited to the developing world. According to European Union data, 60% of work related fatalities are the result of vehicle accidents2 and in the US, the biggest source of workplace injuries come from vehicle accidents.
Avoiding road travel isn’t an option for those working around the world. So what to do? A few recommendations:
Combined with plans, procedures and resources designed to respond to medical emergencies the steps above can help mitigate the risk of harm from road traffic accidents and streamline response in the event of an accident.
Remember: you don’t have to be in a vehicle to fall victim to road traffic accidents – according to the World Health Organization, over half of those killed on the world’s roads are pedestrians, bicyclists, or those on motorcycles/scooters.
The risk from road traffic accidents is real and it isn’t going away. While you can’t avoid the risk, with some basic resources and procedures you can lower your exposure and be prepared to manage in the event of an accident.