The global road safety crisis has reached epidemic proportions.
, and millions more sustain serious injuries that often result in permanent disability.
Despite growing awareness, the numbers keep creeping up. The situation is particularly alarming in low and middle-income countries, where economic growth has boosted vehicle ownership and road construction, but road safety action hasn’t kept pace.
We must stop deaths on the roads. No one would argue with that, of course. But for us who live in Peru and many other developing countries, the importance of making road safety a global development priority really hits home—especially after a string of dramatic crashes that have made headlines across the country.
Last February, a bus fell to the bottom of a 200-metre ravine and left 45 dead in Arequipa, including several children. A month before, the country witnessed its deadliest traffic crash on record when a bus plunged down a cliff in Pasamayo, just north of Lima, killing some 52 people.
Since its launch in March 2016, as a global road safety fund, the GRSF had focused on getting maximum value for the use of its donor funds by making a difference in how we invest in road safety. This is in line with our Strategic Objectives of developing capacity for sustainability in road safety results, promoting a global network of road safety funding, coordination and advocacy mechanisms, and leveraging development bank projects, particularly those of the GRSF host organization, the World Bank.
WASHINGTON, July 26, 2016 – The World Bank (WB) Board of Executive Directors approved a US$100 million loan yesterday that will contribute to reducing transportation costs and improving road safety, as well as the planning and management capacity of Paraguay’s road network. The project will benefit approximately 400,000 Paraguayans that use Routes 1 and 3, which link important development hubs in the country.