The World Health Organization (WHO) reported that road accidents kill 10,379 Filipinos every year, most of them motorcycle riders.
In its global status report on road safety 2015, WHO said majority of the victims were motorcyclists at 5.5 percent, followed by car users, 2.7 percent, pedestrians, 2.0 percent, and cyclists, 0.2 percent.
The agency noted that the Philippines has good laws on the use of seat belts under RA 8750 but the country does not have good drink-driving, helmet, and child restraint laws.
WHO’s criteria on good drink-dri-ving laws include blood alcohol concentration (BAC) limit of less than 0.05g/dl and 0.02g/dl for the general population and novice drivers, respectively. But under Republic Act No. 10586, or the “Anti-Drunk and Drugged Driving Act of 2013”), the limit for novice drivers is also 0.05g/dl.
While most Filipino motorists do not allow children on the front seat, a number of them also do not install child restraints like child seats or put seat belts on their children.
Motorcyclists and cyclists also do not fasten their helmets properly.
According to the WHO, despite the improvements on road safety, around 1.25 million people worldwide die from road accidents each year. More than 90 percent of these accidents occur in low and middle-income countries.
“Road traffic fatalities take an unacceptable toll—particularly on poor people in poor countries,” WHO Director-General Dr. Margaret Chan said in a statement.
The agency reported that the countries that succeeded in reducing the number of road traffic deaths “have achieved this by improving legislation, enforcement, and making roads and vehicles safer.”
“We’re moving in the right direction. The report shows that road safety strategies are saving lives. But it also tells us that the pace of change is too slow,” Chan said.