Vietnam Time

11/9/2018 7:51:26 AM

1,000 helmets presented to improve children’s road safety

On November 8, the Embassy of Sweden in Vietnam, the Asia Injury Prevention (AIP) Foundation and great support from some Swedish companies: AstraZeneca, Volvo, ABB, Ericsson, SKF and Tetra Pak distributed nearly 1,000 high-quality helmets to students at Ba Dinh Primary School in Hanoi.

Students of the Ba Dinh Primary School in Hanoi are presented with helmets on November 8.  (Source: Embassy of Sweden in Hanoi)

Speaking at the event, Swedish Ambassador Pereric Högberg noted: “In Vietnam, I hear stories all the time that the Vietnamese are concerned about safety, especially traffic safety. It is not cool to be on a bike without a helmet and a good helmet is simply life-saving! Let us communicate this widely and set a good example for our family members and friends, and always wear a standard helmet when travelling on a two-wheel vehicle. I want to stress and ensure that riders of all ages are safe while enjoying their bikes.”

National Traffic Safety Committee’s Office Manager Nguyen Trong Thai said road accidents are currently a challenge to Vietnam as well as all countries around the world. In Vietnam, the numbers of traffic accidents, deaths and injured people remain high through they have declined in recent years. Nearly 6,600 people were killed and 11,000 others got injured by traffic accidents from January to October this year.

He added that wearing helmets for children is firstly the responsibility of schools and parents, urging teachers and parents to instruct students to abide by traffic rules and encourage parents to require their children to wear helmets while bringing children to schools by motorbikes.

President of the AIP Foundation Greig Craft said although the adherence to the helmet wearing rule has been improved among adults, the rate among children is still low.

Road safety is a major public health issue in Vietnam. According to estimates from the AIP Foundation, approximately 22,000 people lose their lives and 453,000 suffer injuries due to road crashes each year. With over 80 per cent of the population under the age of 50, the effects of road crash deaths on young people result in losses to both the family and the larger community. Traffic fatalities and injuries also generate economic strain for society. From 2007-2017, AIP Foundation calculated that Vietnam lost USD 3.5 billion as a result of road crashes.

At the event, the organizers called for stronger public awareness and urged adults to put helmets on children whenever they travel on motorcycles. Additionally, there was a flash mob dance that encouraged students to always wear their helmets as well as games that tested their helmet safety knowledge./.

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