2022 will be a dark year for road transport in Norway. After the first half of the year, twice as many people have died in traffic jams than last year – 63 against 31.
For the last six years, we have been able to say that Norway World’s safest transit country. But the question is whether they can boast the same after this year.
Development So far this year has been a very sad first. Behind every death toll, there is a story of grief and despair for all those who have lost a loved one.
All 63 victims were mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, wives, husbands, friends or colleagues. The emptiness of lost experience is hard to fathom.
Who is for us? This year’s accident statistics are also surprising as traffic safety is concerned. Norway has been doing long-term and systematic work for years to reduce accident rates. We have developed and implemented measures based on the vision that no one should be seriously injured or killed in traffic, and we have seen the measures work.
Roads with heavy traffic have been reconstructed in such a way that there are no junctions.
Focus is on campaigns and information activities.
Important traffic training is included in the school.
In many urban areas, cars are being phased out in favor of cycling and walking.
Speeds have been reduced on high-risk roads and police, led by emergency patrol units, have launched a fantastic prevention effort across the country. And many more activities.
Work at the same time Car manufacturers target the car itself to avoid accidents.
Driver assistance systems provide useful information about the traffic situation and help the driver to make better decisions. The car tells you if someone is in your blind spot, if the car skids off the lane, or if someone brakes in front of you.
The car technology works with, among other things, understanding the car driver through artificial intelligence, interpreting eye and head movements and sitting position. This gives the car useful information about how the driver is doing and how attentive they are.
Despite all this, why are accidents increasing this year?
Of course There are many reasons for this, but we know that inattention is a factor in one in three fatal crashes, and we know that mobile phones are one of the biggest sources of distraction in cars.
Since 2000, the use of mobile phones while driving has been banned. Nevertheless, authorities have been forced to dramatically increase the penalties for this offense in recent years.
Last year, police fined 13,624 people for illegal use of mobile phones. Behind these numbers is a small wake-up call: 7 out of 10 are men.
June this year We conducted a study on the use of mobile phones in cars. The responses here showed a similar trend.
Because 25% of women said they used a mobile phone while driving in the past year, compared to 31% of men. Of the men who used the phone, 2 out of 5 said they did it because they were used to it, or because they had good control over driving and did not feel it was a risk.
Knowing how distracting the phone can be, this is a dangerous, deliberate act and a wrong decision.
When we take For us, the fact that such self-reporting involves dark numbers paints a bleak picture. A picture of many drivers overestimating their own abilities, breaking the law and putting themselves and other road users at great risk.
Of the 80 people who died in traffic jams last year, 64 were men. And of the 22 killed in May this year, 18 were men.
Admittedly, we know that male drivers are the majority, so the starting point on the roads is not a 50/50 gender split. But the trend is clear: on Norwegian roads, most men lose their lives.
This summer So we make a clear request to Norwegian drivers and especially to men: Put your mobile phone here «Car mode» While driving a car.
The Car Mode function works similarly to Airplane Mode. By activating Car Mode on your phone, you won’t receive distracting alerts and messages, and you can focus on the road. And if you’ve activated Car Mode once, the phone will automatically activate it the next time you drive.
We think it’s the simplest step you can take to quiet one of the cabin’s biggest distractions while driving and focus on the road.
2022 is not a good year for road safety. Let’s change this now, turn off distractions and make summer roads safer.
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