Volvo: There’s a big gap in road safety between developed and developing nations

The brand wants governments to take action
by Drei Laurel | Feb 20, 2020
PHOTO: Volvo

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), about 1.35 million individuals lose their lives to traffic accidents every year. That’s a troubling figure, but even more concerning is that data shows the risk of death by traffic is over three times higher in developing nations compared to ones that are already developed.

One of the world’s safest car brands thinks it’s time governments take action to address these statistics.

Volvo, which in case you didn’t know invented the modern three-point seatbelt, is calling for countries to enforce seatbelt laws for both front and rear seats, as well as to introduce infrastructure to separate cars from more vulnerable road users like cyclists and pedestrians. This comes as Sweden and the WHO host the 3rd Global Ministerial Conference on Road Safety in Stockholm.

“Global data shows that there is a significant inequality in road safety,” Malin Ekholm, head of the Volvo Cars Safety Center. “Those safety gaps need to be addressed through technology, but also by creating and enhancing a global safety culture. We need to understand and address the variation in seatbelt usage, while infrastructure should focus on improving the safety of vulnerable road users, pedestrians and cyclists.”

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The brand stresses that only 105 countries across the globe enforce seatbelt laws for both the front and rear sections of a vehicle. It is urging members of the United Nations to help their countries and lawmakers to adopt this policy as well.

“Creating a better understanding of the value and need for adequate basic protection is crucial, and we need the help of the UN and national lawmakers to address this through legislation and information,” Ekholm said.

Do you wear the seatbelt when riding in the back seat, or have you only made it a habit to wear it up front?

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PHOTO: Volvo
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