The World Bank's Transport Global Practice has set a new road safety requirement, which will be applied to billions of dollars of World Bank loans and grants. The requirement is expected to prevent thousands of traffic deaths each year and tens of thousands of serious road injuries. The new policy was backed by members of the Three Star Coalition, which includes YOURS - Youth for Road Safety.
Upgraded roads financed by the World Bank are designed to carry more traffic at faster speeds with corresponding economic benefits. When roads are upgraded without rigorous safety measures, deaths and serious injuries rise as a result of the faster speeds and increased traffic volume.
The significance of the World Bank Transport Practice's new requirement is that roads to be financed must now include safety measures such that the new road will have no more forecast fatalities than the original road and will often have fewer fatalities as additional road safety opportunities are defined, even though there are more traffic and faster speeds.
In cases where it is claimed that this standard cannot be reached, there must be a review by the World Bank's Global Road Safety Lead. If they agree that the standard cannot be reached, they would normally work with the project team to ensure that at least 7% of the project budget is devoted to safety measures that attain the best possible results.
The Three Star Coalition Mission
Coordinated by the Fund for Global Health, the Three Star Coalition aims to influence policy and engineering practice in multilateral development banks (MDBs), development agencies, and national highway authorities to promote safer road infrastructure design.
Unsafe roads are a major factor that contributes to the number of road-related deaths and injuries. The Three Star Coalition advocates for the design and construction of safer roads in the developing world. The organization and its members advocate for roads in developing countries to be built to a minimum three-star safety standard for all road users.
To assess roads, the World Bank will use the Road Safety Screening and Appraisal Tool (RSSAT) tool which calculates how the new road compares to the old road in terms of the number of traffic deaths. The new policy is expected to prevent thousands of deaths and tens of thousands of injuries at an annual rate.
YOURS is a Three Star Coalition Member
"YOURS is a proud member of the 3-Star Coalition. I would like to congratulate the World Bank for including road safety requirements within their infrastructure loans and grants. In addition, I would like to thank Keith Johnson for leading this Coalition and representing the members while negotiating with the World Bank, well done!" – YOURS Executive Director, Floor Lieshout.
To continuously raise awareness on the importance of road infrastructure and its role in maintaining road safety, members of the Three Star Coalition will continue to share updates and developments in the organization that relate to road infrastructures and road safety.