A strategic approach to improving road safety in Kazakhstan
Every year more than 2,000 people die on the roads of Kazakhstan. The risk of dying in a road crash in the country is 7 times higher than in Sweden. Last year alone 111 people lost their lives on the roads in the Western Kazakhstan region. A strategic approach is needed therefore to address all aspects of road safety – including enforcement, public awareness, and safe fleet management – in order to see this number decrease and reach global targets of reducing road traffic fatalities by 50% by 2030.
Last week as part the a major regional road safety project we are carrying out in the Western Kazakhstan Region, supported by the local government, Shell Kazakhstan and ENI companies, the EASST team organised a series of training sessions on enforcement, education and occupational road safety management in the city of Uralsk, along with leading a roundtable discussion with local decision makers on developing a regional strategy for road safety.
The training on enforcement was carried out for local police officers by EASST partner and Regional Director Serghei Diaconu. Serghei is the former Head of the Road Traffic Police in the Republic of Moldova, a role in which he spearheaded dramatic reforms of the traffic police, increasing public confidence in the police and transforming road safety enforcement in the country. You can read more about this work in our new article ‘Then and Now: improving police capacity for enforcement saves lives in Moldova’. Serghei uses this experience to offer advice and guidance to traffic police forces across the region to improve their effectiveness in road safety enforcement.
Using the EASST Road Safety Education Pack, translated into Kazakh, Tatiana Mihailova from the Automobile Club of Moldova (ACM) also delivered training for teachers on the importance of road safety education and how to keep kids safe on the road. In Moldova, the ACM have successfully integrated the EASST Education Pack into the school National Curriculum and have to date trained 1000s of teachers in 100s of schools to use the Pack as part of their citizenship classes.
Finally, EASST Academy Director, Dmitry Sambuk hosted a special training day for fleet and transport managers based on our accredited Road Safety at Work: Online Course for Managers. This included presentations, video-lectures from the online course, give-away materials (e.g. brochures on eco-driving) as well as live interactive sessions on the issues of safe fleet management, driver monitoring, training and vehicle management basics.
The course – which was the first of its kind in the region – was attended by over of 40 participants from both public and private transport sectors: including representatives from the Karachaganak Petroleum Operating company (KPO) and transport managers form from the local bus operator, ambulance and driving schools. It also included guidance for managers on how to make the case for fleet safety in their organisations, examples of driver training solutions as well as how to design and implement an action plan to properly manage road risk in the workplace. Participants were particularly interested in the overview of the basic elements of safe fleet management, case studies from UK and Moldova and the role of drivers and managers in the overall process of ensuring the safety of their fleets.
The project will continue over the next year to help the Western Kazakhstan Region develop a comprehensive and practical strategy for managing road risk.