“According to the World Health Organization, every day road crashes kill almost 3,400 people; every year they injure as many as 50 million more. Road crashes are the number one cause of child injuries, and the second leading cause of death for children aged five to fourteen. And the burden of this public health crisis is overwhelmingly borne by the poor: over 90 percent of road traffic fatalities occur in low- and middle-income countries.”
“The 3-Star Coalition is a group of like-minded organizations working to build a healthier world by advocating for the design and construction of safer roads in the developing world. Specifically, we advocate for roads in developing countries to be built to a minimum three-star safety standard for all road users. We urge organizations such as the World Bank to adopt this standard. Moving to a 3 star minimum standard will save lives, avert crippling injuries, and provide substantial economic returns. We see safer road construction as part of a comprehensive systems approach that also includes e.g. improved enforcement of road safety laws, public education, and strong national leadership on road safety.”
Road collisions in Tanzania are an extremely serious, but largely unappreciated public health problem. Addressing the problem requires changing widely held beliefs that injuries are “accidents” and thus unavoidable.