On 27th September 2013, the second phase of a major project “Safe Villages Ukraine” supported by the EBRD, EASST and State Road Police Department of Ukraine was carried out by the Road Safety Support Foundation Ukraine. The project is aimed at improving road safety situation along the M06 road Kyiv-Chop and was launched earlier this year.

Participants of the roundtable in Rivne (l-r): Stanislav Suprunenko, EBRD; Representative and Head of Road Traffic Police of Rivne region; Yegor Kalashnikov, Chairman of the Road Safety Support Foundation Ukraine (RSSF); Oksana Romanukha, RSSF Ukraine; Tatiana Mihailova, ACM Moldova

The second phase events took part in the Rivne region of Ukraine and included: a roundtable on the issue of road safety with wide representation of local stakeholders, followed by external visits, trainings and meetings with school children, teachers and adults in the villages of Babyn and Koryst – where the casualty rates are the highest in the region.

Yegor Kalashnikov presents high-visibility schoolbag at the roundtable

There have been some terrible crashes affecting local pedestrians and farm vehicles along the M06 highway. “Safe Villages” project was designed to tackle the problem by means of educational activities for children, parents and farmers, as well as dissemination of high-visibility materials to local inhabitants.   

“Use of horse carts on the M06 highway is a burning issue. They are not marked properly and are nearly invisible for drivers at night. Reflective elements are the answer. In many countries it has become a norm and proved its effectiveness”, said Yegor Kalashnikov, Chairman of Road Safety Support Foundation during the roundtable.

Schoolchildren get their high-visibility vests and learn basic road safety rules

The study showed that pedestrian wearing dark clothes can be seen from 30 meters, in bright clothes – from 50m and wearing a high visibility element will make him visible from 150-200m.

We believe that pedestrian safety is a matter for both road users: driver and pedestrian. That is why we give away such high-reflective bags, hats, flickers and bracelets in the communities along the road to help pedestrians and horse cart drivers make themselves visible at night time and therefore be safer”, explained Oksana Romanukha, RSSF Project Coordinator.

Schoolchildren gathered at road safety workshop      

Tataiana Mihailova from the Automobile Club of Moldova also took part in the road safety events in Rivne and shared with participants experience of neighboring Moldova on how to improve road safety situation in rural areas especially during the dark periods which is becoming more urgent during autumn and winter times.    

Reflective caps and flickers worn by the villagers could improve their safety on the way to/from school 

Reflective caps, bracelets, flickers, high-visibility vests and school-bags produced as a part of the project were distributed by the team among schoolchildren and adults of Babyn and Koryst. Road safety training and workshops were also delivered to the villagers. The locals gave very positive feedback and shared their vision and recommendations on how to enhance project activities in future.  

“Safe Villages Ukraine” project is supported by high-visibility materials donations from 3M Ukraine and DEKRA Ukraine.