- 1.35 million people die on the world’s roads each year.
- Road traffic injuries are the leading killer of children and young adults aged 5-29 years.
- Strong leadership for road safety is needed to save lives.
- Everybody is a leader, and especially UAE corporations must step up their efforts.
Dubai, United Arab Emirates, 5th May 2019, (AETOSWire) ; The 5th United Nations (UN) Global Road Safety Week will run between 6-12 May 2019. RoadSafetyUAE want to help raising the awareness for this important initiative. As the theme of this activation is ‘Leadership’, we want to focus on the role of private corporations in the context of supporting the cause of road safety, which also has been declared a ‘national priority’ in the ‘UAE Vision 2021’. Private companies have direct influence over their staff and their eco-system and hence, can play a vital leadership role in educating and protecting their stakeholders, as well as flagging road safety improvement potentials on a high level. UAE’s private companies are invited to visit the UN resource center in order to develop initiatives. Here is the relevant background information of the UN:
“Leadership is needed
Leadership is the ability to influence or inspire people to achieve a certain goal. Stronger leadership for road safety is needed at national and local levels to attain road safety targets. The most effective leaders, who hail from all sectors of society, are those who #SpeakUp for road safety and take action. It’s important to recognize that all of us, as individuals, can be leaders for road safety!
Whether we travel as pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists or users of private motor vehicles or public transport, as individuals we can #SpeakUp for road safety. We can behave safely on the road, serve as role models for others, especially young people; advocate for better laws and law enforcement and support those who have been affected by road traffic crashes.
To mark the Fifth UN Global Road Safety Week, we can assess our journeys, record our demands, and prompt decision-makers to make a pledge to make our roads safe.
Leaders within communities
Everyone can be a leader for road safety! As parents, teachers, students, employees, volunteers and concerned citizens, we can all play a role in engaging with others in our community to advocate for safe roads.
We can highlight specific risks on the road, bring these to the attention of community leaders, and demand that they take the concrete measures needed to address them. When a community makes the right to a safe journey a priority, everybody wins!
Leaders within private companies
The chief operating officers and others who lead private companies can be leaders in road safety by ensuring that all their staff, including those who drive as part of their duties, and the fleets they operate understand the importance of road safety and abide by road safety laws. They can also invest financially in road safety efforts in their local communities.
Vehicle manufacturers have a particular role in ensuring that all vehicles meet minimum safety standards, regardless of where the vehicles are made, sold or used.”
Thomas Edelmann, Managing Director of RoadSafetyUAE, states: “We want to underline the responsibility and the opportunities private companies have to support the cause of road safety. In the 5 years of RoadSafetyUAE’s existence, we collaborated with more than 70 UAE companies who engaged with their audiences, focusing either on their external audiences of their customers, consumers, the media and the general public, or focusing on their internal audience meaning their staff and families. Any organization’s commitment to road safety must come from the top. It’s all about leadership! Hence ‘Leadership’, the theme of the UN’s 5th global road safety week is so relevant! To give some examples of great leadership for road safety in the UAE, we want to quote a few of our Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Partners on their efforts for road safety”.
Steve Burnell, Managing Director (School Transport Services) – STS: “At STS we have a responsibility to develop a safety mindset that promotes, educates and embeds the importance of road safety to all of our stakeholders. We must continuously review how we act and what impact our programs have on our people, customers and global citizens, with a specific focus to the 85,000 students that we carry to and from school every day as they are the leaders of tomorrow.”
Thomas Greipel, General Manager of Mercedes-Benz Vans Middle East and North Africa (MENA), said: “As a leading manufacturer of world-class vehicles, Mercedes-Benz Vans is committed to ensuring the safety of its drivers and passengers. Our vehicles are equipped with modern safety and assistance systems with advanced technology that offers support in critical traffic situations to keep our drivers and other motorists safe, and we continue to develop innovative safety features across all of our models while maintaining the standards of quality and robustness. We fully support the work of RoadSafetyUAE and applaud the mission of the 5th UN Global Road Safety Week to raise awareness of best practices in road safety and ultimately keep our drivers and passengers as safe as possible at all times.”
Phil Malem, CEO Serco Middle East: “Serco Middle East are proud of their road safety program. Our recent road safety campaign focused on driver’s behavior and gave our staff basic defensive driving skills and techniques to help reduce the number of accidents on the UAE roads. We believe we must all take responsibility for road safety and behave in a manner which does not endanger ourselves or others.”
Brodie Von Berg, Managing Director Middle East and Australasia, MiX Telematics states: “With 1.35 million deaths every year and road traffic injuries being the 8th leading cause of death globally MiX Telematics’ focus on providing driver safety solutions continues in earnest. We are always looking at ways in which we can help organizations take concrete steps in reducing fleet crashes and see technology as having a huge role to play in improving road safety globally. Typically, our clients see crash reduction rates improve between 50 – 70%, making roads safer for all.”
Naser Shashaa, Regional Director, Middle-east cluster Michelin: “Michelin plays a major role in road safety globally and locally, engaging in a variety of programs to ensure the safety of road users. We are extremely pleased to be an active partner in ‘5th UN Global Road Safety Week’ along with RoadSafetyUAE and other UAE authorities to raise awareness of road safety practices in the region. Michelin is fully committed to road accident prevention efforts across the world. That’s why, as a responsible corporate citizen, the Group raises awareness of best practices in road safety among users and policymakers wherever it operates.”
Michael Arnold, managing director, Doka Gulf FZE on ‘The Importance of Road Safety for Doka’: “At Doka, we believe in the wellbeing of our team members, clients and associated business partners, which means encouraging a culture of safety at work and at home. As an organization that relies on the professionalism of its logistics teams to transport products and systems to and from the job site, making the UAE’s roads as safe as possible remains one of our top priorities. Thanks to Road Safety UAE we are able to share our commitment to achieving this goal.”
“Location and traffic aware technology is a critical requirement for smarter and safer cities”, says Ralf-Peter Schäfer, VP Traffic and Travel Information at TomTom. “It’s important that cities understand where traffic and delays are – but it’s just as important that this information is communicated with the public. Our range of Traffic information services connects smart cities with people, significantly contributing toward greener, safer, less congested and more livable environments.”
“We wish ever more corporations in the UAE recognize the important role they can play in the context of improving road safety by actively engaging with their stakeholders. The applied leadership of corporations can be such an important building block of making the aggressive objectives of reducing road traffic fatalities of the ‘UAE Vision 2021’ a reality. Ultimately, all caring organizations want to protect their eco-systems and the ‘5th UN Global Road Safety Week’ is a great opportunity to raise awareness for the required corporate leadership once again”, concludes Thomas Edelmann.