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Swedens Vision zero is now a global toolkit

Vision Zero (VZ) is a public program that aims to have zero fatalities or serious injuries from road traffic crashes. It was created in Sweden and adopted by the Swedish parliament in 1997, when the bill on traffic safety (the Road Traffic Safety Bill) was passed.

Surprisingly, VZ was not implemented in response to a relatively high death rate from road traffic collisions; Sweden already had one of the lowest rates of road traffic casualties in the world. Rather, VZ was implemented because advocates argued that any deaths were too high of a price to pay for mobility (Elvebakk 2007).

Since VZ was first adopted by Sweden, it has grown into a global vision. Countries such as Norway, the United Kingdom, and Canada have all incorporated VZ’s philosophies into their road safety plans. Multiple cities in the United States have also adopted VZ, including New York City, Austin, Boston, San Francisco, Seattle, Portland, and San Diego. While all of these communities strive to fulfill VZ’s goals, they have implemented the program in a variety of ways to meet their own needs and means.

There are a variety of technological innovations that have the ability to enhance the safety of vehicles. One suggested idea is the integration of seat-belt ignition interlocks, which prevent the car from starting unless the occupants are buckled up. More controversial technologies include alcohol interlocks, which prevent the car from starting if the driver is over the legal alcohol limit, Intelligent Speed Adaptation systems, which support drivers in complying with the speed limit through alerts or by automatically correcting the vehicle’s speed, and black boxes, which are event data recorders (Elvebakk 2007).

Source: Injury Epidemiology

Swedish Vision Zero

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