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Tougher Safety Criteria for Internationally Funded Road Projects

7 July 2008

Road crashes cost developing countries up to $100 billion each year, a figure equivalent to all official overseas aid.

The making Roads Safe Conference held in London on 4 July heard that systematic implementation of safety assessments and design improvements to existing and new roads can act as a ‘vaccine for roads’, dramatically reducing road deaths.

New results from pilot programmes in four developing countries published by the International Road Assessment Programme (iRAP), show that tens of thousands of lives could be saved, with economic returns on investment of more than ten to one, if low cost road safety improvements such as road markings, pedestrian crossings and crash barriers are implemented nationally.

The iRAP 'Vaccines for Roads' report issued during the conference details projected benefits of network wide action to introduce road safety design improvements based on over 10,000kms of inspections in Costa Rica, Chile, Malaysia and South Africa.

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