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Staying Safe On Dangerous Roads

Posted August 15th, 2016 in Articles by Corporate Communication

There’s a serial killer on the streets. No, it’s not a criminal inciting fear and mayhem. But this killer is just as scary and doesn’t discriminate. Even if you’re just taking a walk to the corner store, using your motorcycle to run an errand, or driving your car on your way to work, danger lurks at every curb and everyone is at risk.

 

Road accidents are a leading cause of death globally according to the Global Status Report on Road Safety 2015 by the World Health Organization.

 

Compared to high-income countries, low-income countries have more than double the fatality rates caused by accidents on the road.2 The top 5 risk factors for road safety include speed and drunk-driving, as well as neglect for helmets, seatbelts, and child restraints.2

 

In recent years, the increase of motor vehicles in the Philippines rose from 5,530,052 in 2007, to 7,463,393 in 2012 4 showing an upsurge of almost 2 million vehicles (26% increase). This could be attributed to the availability and sales of more affordable car entry models coupled with an increase in the middle class’ purchasing power.3

 

Also, in the country, road safety laws, such as speed limits and the mandatory use of helmets for motorbike drivers and passengers, have been implemented. Abiding by these traffic rules can reduce accident-related injuries and fatalities, but there are other things you can do to make trips safer whether you’re walking, on your motorcycle, or driving your car:

 

1) Before traveling, make sure your car is in tip-top condition. Regular maintenance jobs and check-ups for your car can go a long, long way in terms of keeping you and your passengers safe.

 

2) Perhaps the most commonly ignored advice on road safety is the simplest one: Do not use your mobile phones while driving. Checking your phone for two seconds could easily cost you your life and that of your passengers’ (and possibly pedestrians, too!). If you really need to send a message or take a call, look for a place to pull over, such as emergency bays, before punching the keys.

 

3) The seatbelt is there for a reason; wear it at all times when on a trip. Using the seat-belt reduces the risk of fatality among drivers and front-seat passengers by 45–50%, and the risk of minor and serious injuries by 20–45%, respectively. Among rear-seat passengers, seatbelts reduce fatal and serious injuries by 25% and minor injuries by up to 75%.2 While we don’t have a comprehensive seat-belt law in the country yet, the numbers prove that buckling up is essential to road safety.

 

4) Take note of and follow speed limits. It’s not only car drivers that figure into accidents on the road. Bikers, cyclists and pedestrians are also part of the statistics. So, whether you’re driving a car or riding a motor bike, avoid speeding unnecessarily to evade any kind of accident.

 

5) Don’t drink and drive. You’ve probably heard this a million times, but if a million reminders is what it will take to prevent people from driving under the influence, then so be it. Be a responsible drinker and make sure you have sobered up before going behind the wheel. Doing so will not only keep you safe, but also help your passengers and others from getting caught in a road mishap.

 

6) If you’re a biker, make sure to put your helmet on and fasten it properly for good measure. The same goes for your co-rider. According to WHO, wearing a motorcycle helmet can reduce the risk of death by almost 40% and the risk of severe injury by approximately 70%.2 Southeast Asia has high motorcycle deaths compared to other Asian regions. In the Philippines, the highest fatality rate comes from motorcyclists.1

 

7) For pedestrians, make sure to avoid distractions and dangerous behavior. Remember to cross streets at marked crosswalks or intersections; don’t cross mid-block. As much as possible, remove headphones and stay off cellphones when crossing. While you should obey traffic signals, do not rely on them solely and observe where vehicle movement is before crossing.

 

8) Sign up for an insurance plan –and not just for your vehicle. Being a responsible driver definitely puts you and others at less risk of danger, but it won’t make you completely accident-proof. As you take all necessary precautions and stay mindful of road safety laws, have peace of mind from knowing you are financially protected against any eventuality. Philippine Prudential offers Life Insurance and Medical Insurance products that can help secure your most important investments –your loved ones. Check out Philippine Prudential’s insurance products today to be safe and secured.

 

 Sources:

1 http://www.rappler.com/nation/110789-road-safety-report-2015-who-philippines
2 http://www.who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_safety_status/2015/GSRRS2015_Summary_EN_final2.pdf?ua=1
3 http://who.int/violence_injury_prevention/road_safety_status/2013/country_profiles/philippines.pdf
4 http://www.nscb.gov.ph/secstat/d_trans.asp

 

 

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