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Road deaths toll improves but EU targets may not be met

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Road deaths toll improves but EU targets may not be met

Car crash

(BRUSSELS) - Road safety statistics released Tuesday by the European Commission show a drop of 2 per cent in the number of fatalities recorded across the EU in 2016, which may not be enough to meet targets set for 2020.

25,500 people lost their lives on EU roads last year, 600 fewer than in 2015 and 6,000 fewer than in 2010. A further 135,000 people were seriously injured on the road according to Commission estimates.

Following two years of stagnation, 2016 marks the return of a positive downwards trend and over the last six years, road fatalities have been cut by 19%. However, the figures may be insufficient for the EU to meet its target of halving road fatalities between 2010 and 2020.

Transport Commissioner Violeta Bulc called on national and local authorities to step up their efforts in order to meet the target: "'Today's statistics are an improvement and something positive to build on. But it's not the figures that worry me the most – it's the lives lost, and the families left behind. Just today we will lose another 70 lives on EU roads and five-times as many will sustain serious injuries."

The chances of being killed in a crash vary from a Member State to the other. Although the gap narrows every year, those living in the Member States with the highest fatalities rates are still over three times more likely to be killed on the road than those living in the countries with the lowest rates.

2016 was also the first time the Commission published data on serious road traffic injuries based on a new common definition, from 16 Member States representing 80% of the EU population. Based on this data, the Commission estimates that 135,000 people were seriously injured across the EU. Vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists accounted for a large proportion of seriously injured people.

2016 road safety statistics: What is behind the figures?

Commission's road safety work and EU road safety statistics


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