On 13th November 2013, the final round table of a major project “Safe Villages Ukraine” took place in Kiev implemented by EASST’s partner Road Safety Support Foundation Ukraine in partnership with the EBRD, EASST and State Road Police Department. The project is aimed at improving safety and reducing injuries and fatalities along the M06 road Kyiv-Chop and was launched earlier this year.
The paricipants of the Kiev round table were Sergey Budnik, Head of the Centre for Road Safety and Automated Systems of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Ukraine, Vladimir Reznikov, Deputy Chief of the State Automobile Inspection MIA of Ukraine, Emma MacLennan, Director of the Eastern Alliance for Safe and Sustainable Transport, Stanislav Suprunenko, Principal Environmental Specialist at European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD) and Yegor Kalashnikov, Chairman of Road Safety Support Foundation, among other project stakeholders.
The Kiev round table
Mr Kalashnikov talked about the project activities taking place in Zhytomyr, Lviv and Rivne region of Ukraine, in the villages situated along the M06 road where a high level of casualties have occurred. This includes: an information campaign on the importance of visibility; working with the police and local authorities to reduce speeds; conducting training with children and parents on safe routes to school; and donating high-visibility equipment and clothing to local people.
Mr Suprunenko of the EBRD stressed the importance of the project for the well being of local communities especially regarding the M06 highway infrastructure problems that can’t be addressed straightway. Meanwhile such measures as education campaigns and increasing visibility on the road can help to reduce the number of road traffic related deaths.
General Budnik echoed this and emphasised the State Road Police Department’s support of the project and other initiatives aimed at improving the road safety situation in Ukraine. A key element of the Safe Villages project is to shape behaviour of road users – vital to casualty reduction. General Budnik spoke of the importance of local partners – including the government, NGOs, academia and the public – in coordinating messages and generating resources.
The children in Sitnyaki receive high vis vests as part of the project
Following the round table, a working visit to the village Sitnyaki took place. The Road Safety Support Foundation and EASST team met with local schoolchildren and their parents, teachers and horse cart drivers. High visibility materials – vests, bracelets, flickers – were produced for all groups and disseminated locally.