The safety of road network users either as drivers or pedestrians, is among the priorities of the Ministry of Justice and Public Order. In order to improve the road safety several actions are being promoted while others are being planned based on the Strategic Road safety Plan 2021-2030.
Strategic Road Safety Plan 2021-2030
The new strategic plan is based on the ‘’Safe System’’ approach which is the philosophy of the new EU policy for the period 2021-2020 and for the approach adopted internationally. The ‘’Safe System’’ refers to the road network system compiled of road infrastructure, vehicles and road users.
In brief, the ‘’Safe System’’ approach aims at the road network system which forgives inevitable human errors and averts their ending to road collisions or minimizes the collision impact so as to prevent fatalities or serious injuries. This will be achieved through implementing policies and actions in the following 5 main pillars of the Safe System:
· Effective management of road safety
· Safe roads and mobility
· Safe vehicles
· Safe road users
· Effective response after road collision
Towards the road safety improvement, the penalties for traffic offences have been increased since 1st
October 2020. Furthermore, an important measure put in place is the elimination of Police tolerance with regards to exceeding speed limit and the enhanced policing already being applied by the Police. The establishment of Drivers Training School and the conduct of awareness campaigns are also among the measures already in place.
At the same time, efforts are being made towards suppressing the driving under drug influence by increasing the annual targeted checks at Narcotest to drivers for detecting substance abuse as an additional weapon for preventing road collisions. The results of these checks with the collaboration of the Cyprus National Addictions Authority will be processed in order to draw conclusions and suggestions for the targeted tackling of this issue.
At the same time as a Ministry we have expanded our cooperation field with the Municipal Authorities and non-governmental organisations and bodies that are active in road safety sector so as to solve issues regarding the policing by Municipal Authorities, the illegal parking, the motorcyclists, the awareness raising for young people etc.
Through the appointment of Road Safety Ambassadors in 2021 and the conduct of new awareness campaigns in cooperation with other Ministries and Services, our aim is to raise awareness among new and existing drivers so as to consolidate their social responsibility. Negotiations are being held with organized motorcyclists regarding the process of issuing a motorcycle license and presently the submission of their proposals is being expected.
At the same time, training seminars at Cyprus Police are being promoted for improving public interaction while the cooperation between Cyprus Police and Road Transport Department for the safe movement of trucks in the road network is ongoing. Daily checks are being carried out at several points and awareness campaigns for professional drivers are held.