Today, the sixth annual United Nations Road Safety Week rolls into action and will stick around until May 23, 2021.
Held in collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO), the international initiative, under the hashtag #Love30 and #StreetsForLife, advocates for Streets for Life by making 30 km/h (20 mph) speed limits the norm for cities worldwide in places where people mix with traffic.
Speeding affects lives in every corner of the globe. WHO reports an average of 400,000 people every year lose their lives due to excess speed, and a total of 1.25 million are killed in traffic accidents overall.
This alarmingly-high number is a result of simple physics: a crash at 141 km/h involves twice as much energy than one at 100 km/h, hence why higher speeds always increase the chance of a crash, as well as its severity on the human body.
Children and youth are most at risk on the streets where they live, play and travel to school. Every day, 3,000 children and young people are killed or seriously injured on the world's roads. A child hit by a car at 30 km/h (20 mph) can survive, whereas if hit at 80 km/h (50 mph), most will die.
WHO highlights that if we can reduce speed by just 1 km/h, we could cut traffic-related injuries world-wide by 2 to 3%. Simple in theory, however considering there are 1.2 billion cars in the world today (most of them capable of reaching 150 km/h or more) it is a monumental task for every level of government to handle.
A simple solution to a difficult problem
This is where automatic intelligent traffic cameras (such as Viion's TrafficCam and TrafficCam 3D) can step in and help policy makers and authorities reach the 30 km/h goal in reducing speed. Using artificial intelligence, Viion's cameras capture speed and identify speeding vehicles automatically, then sends an infraction package of the offending vehicle(s) to authorities for processing. Main advantage of using automated traffic enforcement to mitigate speed is its capacity to detect greater numbers of offenders, and can operate 24/7, day or night, without a single police officer present.
Viion tested this theory in Mexico City, one of the most densely-populated metropolitan cities in the world. After deploying multiple TrafficCam 3D cameras throughout the city, deaths related to traffic accidents dropped by 16% and more than 64 million pesos ($27 million USD) was collected from photo infractions. At the beginning of 2015, there were 739 road-related deaths in Mexico City, yet by the end of the year, there were just 550 cases.Photo infractions also helped reduce the impact of road accidents and injuries; 4,122 registered in 2015, 4,041 in 2016 and 3,684 in November 2017.
Likewise in Ecuador, after Viion deployed more than 600 TrafficCam and TrafficCam 3D cameras throughout the country, the Ecuador Transit Commission ETC) reported an accident reduction of 73%.
Road Safety Week is also an occasion to for leaders around the world to garner policy commitments at national and local levels to deliver 30 km/h speed limits in urban areas, and Viion can help them keep on that promise.