The potential of a better post crash response for greater vulnerable road user safety. Paper presented at Walk21-IX, “Walk 21 Barcelona - A Moving City”, The 9th International Conference on Walking and Liveable Communities, Barcelona, Spain, October 8-10, 2008.
20141350 ST [electronic version only]
In: Proceeding Paper presented at Walk21-IX, “Walk 21 Barcelona - A Moving City”, The 9th International Conference on Walking and Liveable Communities, Barcelona, Spain, October 8-10, 2008, 10 p.
|Samenvatting||The European Federation of Road Traffic Victims - FEVR – was launched in 1991 and is a federation of over 20 European road victim associations, which for many years have been supporting and assisting road crash victims, as well as campaigning on their behalf. They are therefore uniquely informed about what happens after a road crash in which someone has been killed or injured. The overall experience, Europe-wide, is that road deaths and injuries are not treated with the appropriate seriousness, that the post crash response in the majority of cases is unsatisfactory to an unacceptable level. It has also been found that when vulnerable road users are the victims, this response can even be more unsatisfactory, as some examples show. FEVR and the organisations under its umbrella contend that the way a country responds to road death and injury is indicative of the seriousness itattaches to road safety, and they are therefore campaigning for governments to include the post crash response into their prevention work and road safety strategies. What constitutes this post crash response that victim organisations want to see improved and treated as part of prevention? : - investigation of crashes : these should be to minimum national standards; - criminal justice : with fitting laws, charges and sentences; - civil justice : fair compensation/damages payments (liability issues, length of proceedings, etc.); - medical care : physical and psychological, to national standards. A handout of a campaign manifesto in respect of the above will be available. Recent developments in relation to the above areas include: investigation : Investigation Manual for police and Coroner Bill reform in the UK; criminal justice : new charge from August 2008 in the UK; civil justice : strict liability legislation, which benefits vulnerable road users and is already operating in several countries; medical care : road injury is at present not a priority for the health sector and consistent trauma care is not available (Royal College of Surgeons, UK, and EU Report ‘Injuries in the EU’, launched April 2008). The EU report ‘Injuries in the EU’ gives a summary of road fatalities and injured road users, EU27, from 2003-2005: There are almost 50,000 road fatalities in the EU per year, 17% of whom are pedestrians and 7% cyclists. The Apollo EC supported Project by EuroSafe, ofwhich FEVR is a collaborating NGO, addresses vulnerable road user injuries as part of a joint project on strategies and best practices for the reduction of injuries, it ends in 2008. A book 'Murder most foul; a study of the road death problem' written 60 years ago by JS Dean, Chair of the Pedestrian Association in the UK, deplored the fact that vulnerable road users had to carry a disproportionate responsibility for their safety compared with those who posed the danger – this book is still highly relevant and copies will be available. (Author/publisher)|
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