Sarajevo, 21 June –Transport Community’s regional campaign “It’s a Thin Line” aiming to increase the safety of intersections of railways and roads in the Western Balkans got underway today in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Minister of Transport and Communications Mr Vojin Mitrović, Director of Transport Community Permanent Secretariat Mr Matej Zakonjšek and Head of Cooperation at the EU Delegation to BiH officially launched the campaign, which includes animated videos, flyers and a video currently being shown on public broadcaster BHT1.
“Although they represent only a small proportion of road crashes, the severity of collisions at railway crossings is often high compared to other crashes. 59% result in fatalities and severe injuries! I am pleased that we have full support of Minister Mitrović to jointly tackle this issue. By joining forces, coordinating our actions and having a region-wide approach to increase public awareness, we can decrease the number of accidents on rail level crossings towards the “Vision Zero” by 2050,” Director Zakonjšek was quoted as saying.
Public awareness campaign will target a wider audience via animated videos, dedicated events and printed materials. It is part of “soft” measures to raise awareness of all participants in traffic about the dangers of improper crossing of road/rail intersections. In 2021, a new Decade of Action for Road Safety started, with the ambitious target of preventing at least 50% of road traffic deaths and injuries by 2030. The World Health Organisation and the UN regional commissions developed a Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety 2021-2030, which will be a guide for devising concrete actions that will improve road safety in the region. Unfortunately, there is a lot of work ahead of us, given that road safety statistics in the region are worse than in the EU.
In parallel, the Transport Community is supporting the regional partners in Western Balkans to improve the infrastructure, procure safety equipment and install proper signaling on level crossings in the region.