As per the Global Status Report on Road Safety, road traffic injuries are on the rise. now the eighth most prominent cause of death for all age categories. It is now the most significant cause of death among children and young adults aged 5 to 29.
Traffic fatalities in Thailand
Thailand has one of the greatest road traffic mortality rates in the world, according to Bloomberg Philanthropies’ 2019 Bangkok Report. Bangkok, the capital and largest city of Thailand, with a population of 5.7 million people and an increasing number of registered vehicles. In 2016, around 850 people died on Bangkok’s roads.
While certain road collisions can be predicted and avoided, efforts to minimize crashes in resource-constrained areas have been hampered by a lack of precise, geo-referenced impact and health outcome data to facilitate targeted interventions.
Organizations that have come together to improve road safety
• The World Bank and nine other partners have joined the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety, a $125 million collaboration aimed at decreasing road deaths and serious injuries in 10 developing-world cities.
• Cities receive funds for three full-time workers to work on road safety projects inside local administrations, such as the Bangkok Metropolitan Administration’s (BMA) Traffic and Transportation Department.
• This unique project produces an evidence-based road safety strategy and implements all critical components of road safety operations, such as infrastructure enhancement, communication, advocacy, and enforcement.
• Thailand is one of the nations participating in the Bloomberg Philanthropies Initiative for Global Road Safety, which aims to lessen road traffic fatalities and serious injuries.
Safety Initiatives being taken.
• On training and capacity building, the World Bank and other collaborating organizations have offered technical assistance. Over 450 experts have been trained in road safety engineering to date.
• In November 2018, Chulalongkorn University and the iRAP Centre of Excellence signed a partnership agreement to launch a Thai Road Assessment Program (ThaiRAP).
• As a self-governed, locally-led project, the ThaiRAP plan is being produced in partnership with other concerned bodies such as the Ministry of Transport, the Department of Highways, and other key stakeholders.
• In collaboration with the International Road Assessment Program (iRAP) and Chulalongkorn University, a team of travel guides at Bangkok Nightlife has trained over 450 road safety experts. It has conducted safety assessments of over 1,000 km of high-risk roads and launched three pilot projects to make roads safer since 2015.
• To continue the work, iRAP, and Chulalongkorn University have signed a collaboration agreement to establish a Thai Road Assessment Program directed and administered locally (ThaiRAP).
The World Bank’s role is to motivate countries to raise their performance standards. In this aspect, having a program like ThaiRAP is critical for country ownership because it allows them to determine the target policy for each road being rehabilitated or built from the ground up.
The above safety initiatives might soon result in a safer road experience.