Tackling Africa's road safety crisis
20% of global road deaths occur in Africa, although the continent only has 2% of the world's vehicles. A key concern for policy makers tackling this crisis is the lack of data on road crashes. If anything, the total number of road deaths is significantly underreported. Collecting and analysing accurate data that can inform policy requires harmonised and rigorous collection methods.
To address this issue, and following a Memorandum of Understanding signed earlier this year, the World Bank, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA) and the ITF are working, together with other key stakeholders such as the African Transport Policy Programme (SSATP), towards the establishment of the African Road Safety Observatory. The Observatory aims to provide African governments with a platform to foster international and continental cooperation in Africa and to generate robust road safety data and analysis. It will also work to help governments better understand and more effectively use this data.
The observatory will enable knowledge-sharing by countries with exemplary crash data collection and analysis with those that want to improve. Positive experience with the Ibero-American Road Safety Observatory (OISEVI) - that ITF was instrumental in creating in 2011 - has inspired the development of the African Observatory.
The creation of the Observatory was announced at First African Road Safety Forum, held from 13-15 November in Marrakesh, Morocco, and jointly organised by the Kingdom of Morocco and SSATP. ITF Secretary-General Young Tae Kim stressed the importance of good data during his opening speech at the Forum (photo). He later met with Abdelkader Amara, Moroccan Minister of Equipment, Transport, Logistics and Water.