Road Safety While on the Road
By MedAire (used with permission)
An International SOS Company, MedAire
Road safety is one of the top travel risks for business travelers and crew members while at destination. Whether as a pedestrian, a vehicle driver, or a passenger in a car in a new city, awareness of the risks and some simple tips can keep you safe wherever you need to travel.
MedAire, an international SOS company, reports that traffic accidents while at destination are a top risk for our business aviation clients – whether as pedestrians, drivers, or as passengers. MedAire manages thousands of medial cases related to road and traffic accidents for clients while traveling. Through parent company International SOS, we work closely with the Global Road Safety Partnership with the mission of the sustainable reduction of road-crash death and injury.
Simple Measures for Improved Road Safety2
- Always wear a seat-belt: wearing a seat-belt reduces the risk of a fatal injury by up to 50% for front seat occupants and 75% for rear seat occupants
- Slow down: a 5% reduction in speed can reduce fatal crashes by 30%
- Protect your head: the correct use of a motorcycle helmet can reduce the risk of road crash death by 40% and of a serious injury by 70%
- Use child restraints: the use of correct child restraints reduces the risk of a fatal injury in a crash by 70% for infants and by 54 — 80% for young children
Business travelers and crew can take simply measures to reduce their risks while on the road to best stay safe.
And Never Ever…
- Use a mobile phone when driving
- Drink and then drive
- Drive if you are tired or jet lagged
Be Prepared for Road Travel
Different cultures, laws, customs, and infrastructure can make every trip by road a risk — and being safer on the road isn’t just about being a safer driver. Sometimes, the safest option is not to drive at all.
If you don’t know the rules of the road, highway conditions, or local language, you may be better off arranging transportation with a trusted and vetted provider. The key is to understand the risks, get the facts, and take steps to protect your safety.
An Issue for Everyone, Everyday
Consider the following when determining the safest mode of transport:
- Road condition
- Traffic density
- Traffic behaviour
- Traffic laws
- Emergency support
- Weather conditions
- Safety features of the vehicle
The Only Acceptable Number is ZERO
Responsibility for safer roads comes down to us all, at all levels. As governments, private enterprise, civil society, and individuals, we must all take responsibility. As has been realised in many road safety campaigns and strategies right around the world, the only acceptable number of deaths and serious injuries on our roads, is ZERO.
Since 2013, the International SOS Foundation has supported the Global Road Safety Partnership to help mitigate road accidents faced by business travelers and expatriates working abroad.
Road Safety – The Facts
- Road traffic crashes kill 1.24 million people each year
- Road crashes are the 8th leading cause of death globally and the leading cause of death for those aged 15-29 years3
- Road crashes are one of the top five causes of medical evacuations led by International SOS4
- Only 28 countries have adequate laws addressing the 5 main risk factors: speed, drink-driving, helmets, seat-belts and child restraints
- The financial cost of road crashes is estimated at more than US$500 billion each year
- How safe you are on the roads varies dramatically based on where you are — but risks remain every time you are on or near the roads
For more information about road safety, educational tools available and to download the free Road Safety Pocket Guide, visit: internationalsos.com/topics/road-accidents
1 Data: Global Status Report on Road Safety 2013, World Health Organization
2 Data: Global Status Report on Road Safety 2013, World Health Organization
3 Data: Global Status Report on Road Safety 2013, World Health Organization
4 2014 International SOS data
Flight departments around the world rely on MedAire, an International SOS company, to reduce their travel safety risks. Crews are trained on the resources to manage in-flight illness and injury with onboard medical equipment and telemedicine assistance. On the ground, passengers and crew have one resource for medical referrals; guaranteed payments for medical expenses; assistance with lost documents and prescriptions; online and e-mail travel advisories; evacuation support and a host of other services.
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