|PAHO/WHO Guyana's PWR’s Remarks at the Launch of the Global Decade of Road Safety 2011-2020|
Good morning. I think that we need do no more than read, watch, and listen to the media in
 Guyana Police Force Traffic Department
The Global Decade of Action hopes to save 5 million lives, prevent 50 million serious injuries, and save US$5 trillion over the next 10 years. In the
The Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011–2020 includes a Global Plan that outlines steps to improve the safety of roads and vehicles, enhance emergency services, and strengthen road-safety management in general, including the behaviour of road users. It calls for more and stronger laws, and better enforcement of the laws that exist. The Global Plan includes measures such as the construction of bicycle and foot paths and separate motorcycle lanes, as well as improved access to safe public transportation.
Guyana has been taking action to improve road safety, including enacting laws against drinking and driving (the legal limit is 0.35 mg/ml and both the blood and breath alcohol concentration levels are used to press charges, which result in fines), riding motorcycles without helmets, seatbelt non-use, and speeding (radar guns are used). There is ongoing advocacy for automated speed enforcement (fixed radars and speed cameras at traffic lights) and better provisions on road networks for cyclists and pedestrians.
Although when we think of road safety we do not automatically think of health, it is clear that this is a public health issue, as well as one related to safety, security, and transportation, since the health sector has to deal with the effects of road crashes. For this reason, the establishment of the multisectoral National Road Safety Council was a big step forward, and the Pan American Health Organization/World Health Organization (PAHO/WHO) will be pleased to continue to support the multisectoral approach to dealing with the challenges.
PAHO/WHO has supported the school patrols program, parent and teacher training, and driver education. We have provided support to the National Road Safety Council to build its capacity and draft its strategy paper, which will be made operational through a National Road Safety Plan. We have supported a road safety campaign and are supporting an emergency room study to document the connection between alcohol misuse and road crashes in
We commit to continuing our technical cooperation with counterparts and partners from various sectors to contribute to strengthening road safety in
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