The number of road traffic deaths decreased by 21 percent in the first half of this year compared to the same period last year: 227 people died in the first six months of 2023, and in 2022 there are still 287 people. This is the lowest number of deaths ever outside of corona years. This is evidenced today by the road safety measure developed by the FIAS Institute, which is compiled with figures from the Federal Police.
In Wallonia, the number of road fatalities fell further, from 133 to 100 (-25 percent), and in Flanders the drop was slightly less (from 142 to 122, or -14 percent). In Brussels, we recorded 5 deaths in the first six months of this year, compared to 12 in that period last year. However, an average of 9 people still die on our roads every week, which is still a very high number.
Nationwide, the number of road deaths is decreasing for almost all groups. However, it is striking that the number of fatal accidents involving delivery trucks remains high (29 deaths in the first half of 2023 compared to 28 deaths in 2022). And the continued success of e-commerce may play a role. And the number of deaths caused by cycling fell sharply from 54 to 37.
More deaths on weekend nights
One worrying trend is that the number of deaths during weeknights has doubled (35 deaths in the first half of 2023 compared to 18 deaths during the same period last year). More than a third of those deaths occurred on the night from Thursday to Friday, when some people celebrate.
The number of crash injuries is decreasing for almost all types of road users. The most positive trend can be seen in the number of accidents involving electric scooters (-18 percent). The rules were tightened just over a year ago, and that tightening may now translate into fewer accidents.
“1.4 billion euros for safe cycle paths”
Flemish Transport Minister Lydia Peeters said in response: “Hard work is being done in the field, and the achievements of the Flemish Road Safety Plan are gradually becoming visible.” We hope that this positive development of numbers will continue in the coming period. The decrease in the number of deaths caused by cycling is certainly a positive thing. We must continue to work to improve road safety in Flanders, focusing on both infrastructure and behaviour. “For example, we are investing heavily in safe cycling infrastructure. This legislature will spend at least €1.4 billion on safe and comfortable cycling paths,” says Peters. The Minister also considers it necessary to continue focusing on road safety awareness and education.
Unlimited free access to Showbytes? Which can!
Log in or create an account and never miss a thing from the stars.
“Total coffee specialist. Hardcore reader. Incurable music scholar. Web guru. Freelance troublemaker. Problem solver. Travel trailblazer.”