Importance of Road Safety Education

Public health problems are taken into serious considerations for the effective solution of problems. Health problems include number of entities but unfortunately, things are not pertained into serious frame in our country ‘Pakistan’. Health and Education are the two important and focused parameters that should be on prior basis for any developing country because it is associated for the rapid change in the economy of respective country. Due to the increase in vehicle ownership, the graphical trend of road traffic accidents in Pakistan is abruptly disturbed which include minor, severe and fatal road crashes of all type of road users. The problem is again connected with the health issue, road traffic is not a problem that should be tackled through Enforcement action, it is a common health problem affecting common public. As per the statistical analysis of Social Research and Development Organization (Non Government Organization and Research center working on the effective road safety education culture and promotion for entire Sindh), high severity rate is recorded for Karachi, a metropolitan city of Pakistan. The areas include Korangi road, Korangi Industrial area, National Highway (Urban), MA Jinnah road and Shahrah-e-Faisal.

There is the immense need to facilitate the users in terms of effective road safety education. Education is the least important parameter among the three E’s of transportation but it could play the major role when set from initial phases. In this connection planning and management from the perspective of stakeholders is mandatory. Road users are not aware from civic sense, traffic rules and regulations and unfortunately they are the registered direct license holders of vehicles. This corresponds to the negligence driving by the road users and ultimately leading towards road crash. It is not the blame game to target the users but it needs the orientation of existing system. The system should be designed in a manner that without basic road safety knowledge, a person should not be able to withstand for his/her personal vehicle. Road safety education and important subject matter should be introduced at primary; secondary and higher level in order to better immaculate the awareness raising issue. Inauguration of traffic safety seminars, forums, conferences not only for the relevant stakeholders but also for the common man is another important way forward step of betterment. It should be the part of documented legislation that road users are capable enough to attend these types of seminars in the past at the time when license is issued.

Government functionary bodies, Private sector, Universities, Schools, Colleges, Engineers and Practitioners need to sit together and should work on the curriculum and syllabus of road safety education at different levels. For any productive result, the basics should be as stronger and involvement of road safety in the syllabus is the first step. After the accomplishment of this step, the further steps including the awareness programs, Engineering and Enforcement issues will be partially resolved. In the similar way, training sessions should be arranged and effectively designed for each class of road user like drivers, riders, pedestrians and passengers. Each class has its own responsibilities and rights and they are linked with technical traffic crash problem.

Road safety is a problem that cannot be resolved overnight or even removed but it can be minimized in number of ways discussed above. Apart from that, it is also the responsibility of every single individual to develop civic sense which is the major issue. Every one is interested in his/her own share within the traffic stream. The traffic environment is dependent on the players of the road that are basically road users and their skills can be enhanced only by proper road safety education.

Safety is feature that should be taken as common public health problem. Most of the developing countries are affected with the high rate of traffic crashes incorporating number of minor, serious and fatal accidents. Number of studies have done and various researchers are working on this area creating a balance between three E’s of transportation which are basically Education, Engineering and Enforcement. The article is based on promoting the road safety education at various levels and it is pertained to start the work with the step of education. In this connection, safety seminars, forums, licensing and training are more focused in the article with support and evidences.