In early March 2012 with the support of the Eastern Alliance for Safe and Sustainable Transport (EASST), Mr. Poghos Shahinyan, EASST Partner and Head of the Secretariat of the National Council for Road Safety (NCRS) in Armenia, visited Moldova to participate in an exchange of best practice and experience in road safety. The visit provided an opportunity for Mr. Shahinyan and representatives of the Automobile Clubs of Moldova and Transnistria to discuss the achievements of their organisations and share the results of projects in their countries aimed at reducing casualty figures and the risk of road crashes.

The Automobile Club of Moldova (ACM) organized a series of seminars and meetings in Chisinau and Comrat where Mr. Shahinyan spoke about the current road safety situation in Armenia and the structure and activities of the National Council for Road Safety. In Chisinau, Mr. Shahinyan together with the representatives of the ACM, Traffic Police, Ministry of Transport, Ministry of Information and Technology, and State Road Administration of Moldova participated in a workshop held at the Ministry of Transport and Road Infrastructure dedicated to the presentation of the Regional Plan for the Land Transport Safety in TRACECA countries. At this meeting Mr. Shahinyan, Mr. John Field, the Team Leader of the TRACECA project “Land Transport Safety and Security”, and Mr. Andrei Cuculescu the National Secretary of TRACECA in Moldova delivered presentations on road safety issues. The workshop participants discussed the further actions required to ensure road safety in the TRACECA region, examined the specific actions taken in Armenia, and shared the experience of the working groups of the National Road Safety Councils in their countries.

The ACM also organised a visit to the Driver Licensing Centre of the Ministry of Information in Chisinau. The Chief of the Centre of Documentation of Drivers and Registration of Vehicles, Mr. Iurie Tîşcul and  Deputy Chief of the Department Mr. Ilie Bricicaru demonstrated the innovations of the renewed Centre – a result of the trilateral exchange programme organised by the EASST in 2010.

The meeting participants including EASST partners Vitaly Rotari, Poghos Shahinyan and Tatiana Mihailova (first from left and third and second from right)During the visit to the capital of Gagauzia, Comrat, meetings were held with the chiefs and deputies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Gagauzia and the Road Police Department of Gagauzia and Comrat. The role of law enforcement and the traffic police was discussed as well as the importance of equipment and technology in the field of road safety. The database, documentation and forms for accident registration, of great interest to Mr. Shahinyan, were presented at the main Traffic Police Department. In this regard, it was proposed to establish a partnership and to organize additional programs for sharing experiences and promoting efficient methods and technologies for law enforcement in road safety. The guests also visited the local office of the Department of Documentation of drivers and vehicles in Comrat.

An experience exchange seminar was also organized in Tiraspol where representatives of the ACM and Mr. Shahinyan visited their colleagues from the Automobile Club of Transnistria (ACT). Mr. Shahinyan presented a positive experience of cooperation between NGOs in Armenia where organizations work together through joint campaigns aimed at reducing the number of road crashes and changing society’s attitude to this problem.

Organized by the ACT, a meeting was held with the Head of State Administration of Tiraspol, Mr. Andrei Bezbabchenko and Head of Trade, Transport and Communications, Mr. Eduard Gutsol. The guests were informed of the traffic problems in the Transnistrian capital and the wider region. In turn, the guest of Armenia informed his hosts of the current legislation in his country, as well as the innovations, technologies, potential resources and effective cooperation that exists in the field of the improvement of road safety.

The exchange visit between EASST’s partners in Armenia and Moldova provided an excellent opportunity to share best practice in road safety, learn from the experience of others, and create new partnerships to work towards the common goal of improving road safety and saving lives.