Ireland is the winner of this year’s European Transport Safety Council Road Safety Performance Index (PIN) award. The annual award is presented to a European country that has demonstrated continued progress on road safety combined with a strategic approach to tackling the problem across government.The award will be presented to Shane Ross, the Irish Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport at an event in Brussels later today (Wednesday 19 June).Ireland was the second safest European Union Member State in 2018, in terms of road mortality (road deaths per million inhabitants) and has moved up five places in the ranking of EU countries since 2010 when it held 7th place. In terms of numbers killed, Ireland has cut annual deaths by more than 30% since 2010. By comparison, deaths increased in other relatively safe countries over the same period including Sweden and the Netherlands.According to ETSC, Ireland’s performance has been driven by the establishment of a specific government road safety agency (Road Safety Authority – RSA), a long-term strategic plan to cut road deaths with specific targets, regular evaluation and follow-up, and a multi-agency approach to delivery across government. In recent years considerable efforts have been put in place on tackling dangerous speeding, as well as drink-driving.
Antonio Avenoso, ETSC Executive Director commented:
“Ireland has made great progress on road safety in recent years, while at the same time recognising areas where it still needs to do more – such as improving the safety of cycling. What stands out is the strategic approach: analysing the data, setting targets, and making sure the job gets done. If every country in Europe could get to the same level of safety as Ireland, we could cut road deaths by 40%. As it is, many countries are standing still and even going backwards. We can learn a lot from Ireland’s approach – it’s a model for the European Union.”