The State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate: The Number of Road Traffic Accidents Involving Pedestrians Decreased by 6.5% This Year

31 May 2017

The number of Road Traffic Accidents Involving Pedestrians has decreased in Russia by 6.5% since the beginning of the year, as RIA Novosti learnt from a source in the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs. However, pedestrians remain the most vulnerable category of road users. Only in the last year there were over 52 thousand pedestrian collisions, that was one-third of the total number of RTAs. The most of such accidents occurred through the fault of drivers who grossly violated the traffic rules or just did not see people on the road, according to the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate.

To save a pedestrian

Last year, at the meeting of the Presidium of the State Council for road traffic safety, the President of the Russian Federation paid attention to the inadmissibly high number of accidents involving pedestrians. He stated that too many people still die on pedestrian crossings and proposed to toughen the responsibility of drivers for violating the rules on “zebras”.

When doing so, the Head of State said that the key task was the education of driving culture which, according to him, meant a strict compliance with the Road Traffic Rules, adherence to the norms of competent, friendly behavior on roads, understanding of responsibility for your life, and for the lives of your loved ones, for the safety of other road users.

According to the official statistics of the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate, in the period from January to April 2017 over 14.5 thousand road traffic accidents involving pedestrians were recorded, which is less by 6.5% than in the same period of the previous year. In these accidents 1,361 people died (a decrease by 17%), and 13,771 people were injured (a decrease by 5.5%).

Not only rights, but also responsibilities

The State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate stressed that pedestrians are fully legitimate road users as well as drivers, with their rights and responsibilities. All this is set forth in a separate chapter of the Road Traffic Rules. The same Rules describe the pedestrians’ responsibility for their violation, such as crossing the road in the wrong place, i.e. outside a pedestrian crossing. Violators face a fine from 500 to 1,500 rubles.

But if a pedestrian suddenly stepped onto the road and provoked an accident or just created an obstacle for the traffic, such actions are qualified according to Article 12.30 Part 1 of the Administrative Offences Code of the Russian Federation and are punishable by a fine of 1,000 rubles.

“Pedestrians often provoke road accidents. For example, for four months of this year we recorded over 14 thousand pedestrian collisions, of which more than 8 thousand incidents occurred through the drivers’ fault, and 5.7 thousand, through the fault of pedestrians themselves”, according to Major-General of Police Vladimir Kuzin, the Deputy Head of the Main Directorate for Road Traffic Safety of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs.

According to him, despite the reduced accident rate the number of pedestrians killed on roads is still inadmissibly high. At the same time the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate takes measures to prevent such RTAs, including regular preventive raids, explanatory work among road users.

Reflectors: a fashion accessory or necessary protection

According to the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate, over 40% of pedestrian collisions occur at night. The risk of such accidents increases in autumn and winter, when the light day is shorter, and the weather conditions significantly reduce visibility on the roads.

Pedestrian can be more visible on the road by using refractors or, as they are often called, light reflectors, retroreflectors, or flickers. The action principle is simple: they reflect the light of vehicle headlights, and pedestrians become visible in the dark.

According to research data provided to RIA Novosti by the “Risk-Free Road Traffic” Expert Center, an average reflector ensures the pedestrian’s visibility in the head lamp upper beam at a distance of 400 meters from the vehicle. According to the State Road Traffic Safety Inspectorate, the use of reflectors reduces the road accident risk 6–8 times.

Since July 1, 2015 pedestrians, when crossing a road and walking on the roadside outside the populated areas, must use retroreflective elements, otherwise they face a fine of 500 rubles.

"It is important that a variety of bracelets and badges glowing in the dark were sold at bus stops, in ticket offices, and even in food stores", as Nataliya Agre, the President of the “Risk-Free Road Traffic” Expert Center, told in her interview to Ria Novosti.

According to her, for example, in Europe reflectors are the same common products as sweets or drinks. “Given the short light day for most of the year, difficult weather conditions, and a low level of illumination even in large cities, we must ensure children’s visibility on the road. When doing so, we should not only provide for the availability of reflector throughout the country, but also define regulations for import and production of children's outerwear and accessories in the Technical Regulations of the Customs Union,” N. Agre believes.

She thinks that the school uniform shall also include mandatory reflecting elements. Thus, the children’s safety will be ensured at the State level, independently of the choice of insufficiently informed parents.

“Towards Safety”

To teach drivers and pedestrians the safe behavior on the road, the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate of the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs, in cooperation with the Russian Association of Motor Insurers (RAMI) and the “Risk-Free Road Traffic” Expert Center regularly conducts social campaigns. Recently, the “Crosswalk Concerns” campaign ended, the main goal of which was to convey the necessity to observe traffic rules to road users and to tell about the influence of the right interaction between drivers and pedestrians on the road safety.

As part of the campaign various Russian regions opened “Safety Laboratories”, where not only children, but also their parents and teachers undergo training the traffic rules basics. The organizers note the uniqueness of this project, which lies in the affordable way of presenting information, a wide audience coverage, and the program’s mobility. It is planned that in two years 30 such centers will open their doors in Russia, to train at least five thousand children and teenagers.

In addition, agents of the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate in all regions carry out measures aimed at preventing RTAs involving pedestrians, in the first place, children. Thus, in May this year over 12 thousand schoolchildren participated in the large-scale campaign “Light Up!”, in which they were told about the benefits of using reflectors. Last summer, many regions welcomed the campaign “Walking Safely”, also dedicated to the use of refractors.

During the summer break, agents of the State Motor Vehicle Inspectorate conduct training sessions in school-based and country children’s camps, analyzes dangerous traffic situations with teenagers, and explain them on specific examples why it is so important to use reflectors.

The publication is prepared by as part of the Federal Target Program “Increasing Road Safety in 2013–2020"



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