News / Health

Traffic Safety at the Heart of Walks, Rallies Around the World

Traffic Safety at the Heart of Walks, Rallies Around the Worldi
X
May 10, 2013 12:03 PM
Thousands of people around the world are taking part in walks and rallies to promote traffic safety. May is Global Youth Traffic Safety Month. Traffic safety is a subject that touches the hearts of many, including the Nelson Mandela family of South Africa. VOA's Carolyn Presutti explains.
Thousands of people around the world are taking part in walks and rallies to promote traffic safety.  May is Global Youth Traffic Safety Month.  Traffic safety is a subject that touches the hearts of many, including the Nelson Mandela family of South Africa. 

Cars and people -- trying to get along on one of the world's busiest roads. Biking and walking and crossing --  in Cambodia. India, and Tanzania.  Competing with driving, sometimes risky, sometimes, losing.

Traffic crashes worldwide claim 1.2 million lives every year.  South Africa has one of the world's worst road safety records, seeing about 40 deaths each day.  Zanani Mandela -- great-granddaughter of Nelson Mandela -- died in a crash three years ago on the eve of the World Cup.  

The Long Short Walk for safe roads is in her honor -- like this one in Vietnam and many more all over the world.  Zanani's uncle, Kweku Mandela, joined the walk in Washington. "If could create something that would save lives in the future and could educate people we should bring light to it," he said. "So we did this in Zanani's name."

Walker Kristen Thomen is learning how to drive but is still haunted by a crash several years ago.  She wants people to know the consequences of unsafe driving.  

"People do get hurt and traumatized.  Right now, I’m scared to back out of my driveway and when I learn how to drive, I have to learn how to back out of my driveway.   It’s really traumatizing me for me because everytime, I see this accident happening,” Thomen stated.

Outgoing U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood says distracted driving is the new killer.

"Eighty-six percent of us buckle up but the whole notion of texting and driving," he said. "Cellphone use and driving, people don't get it yet."

The number of traffic deaths in the United States inched up last year, after dropping steadily for the past six years.

But globally the number continues to rise, expected to reach nearly 2 million deaths every year in the next decade.  That's why the effort is so strong to reach this age group.

And even younger.  Four-year-old Kai Zarr knows all about safety. "Hold hands when crossing the street with an adult," Zarr added.

“The younger you get to them and teach them about the culture of safety, the more likely they are to practice safe habits the rest of their life,” Zarr's father said.

A crucial lesson, passing safety habits onto their children.

Carolyn Presutti

Carolyn Presutti is an Emmy and Silver World Medal award winning television correspondent who works out of VOA’s Washington headquarters.   She has also won numerous Associated Press awards and a Clarion for her coverage of The Syrian Medical Crisis, Haiti, The Boston Marathon Bombing, Presidential Politics, The Southern Economy, and The 9/11 Bombing Anniversary.  In 2013, Carolyn aired exclusive stories on the Asiana plane crash and was named VOA’s chief reporter with Google Glass.

You can follow Carolyn on Twitter at CarolynVOA, on Google Plus and Facebook.

You May Like

Koreas Mark 61st Anniversary of War Armistice

Muted observances on both sides of heavily-armed Demilitarized Zone that separates two decades-long enemies More

Judge Declares Washington DC Ban on Public Handguns Unconstitutional

Ruling overturns capital city's prohibition on carrying guns in pubic More

Pricey Hepatitis C Drug Draws Criticism

Activists are using the International AIDS Conference to criticize drug companies for charging high prices for life-saving therapies More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Students in Business for Themselvesi
X
Mike O'Sullivan
July 26, 2014 11:04 AM
They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Not Even Monks Spared From Thailand’s Junta-Backed Morality Push

With Thailand’s military government firmly in control after May’s bloodless coup, authorities are carrying out plans they say are aimed at restoring discipline, morality and patriotism to all Thais. The measures include a crackdown on illegal gambling, education reforms to promote students’ moral development, and a new 24-hour phone hotline for citizens to report misbehaving monks. Steve Sandford reports from Bangkok.
Video

Video Virtual Program Teaches Farming Skills

In a fast-changing world beset by unpredictable climate conditions, farmers cannot afford to ignore new technology. Researchers in Australia are developing an online virtual world program to share information about climate change and more sustainable farming techniques for sugar cane growers. As VOA's Zlatica Hoke reports, the idea is to create a wider support network for farmers.
Video

Video Airline Expert: Missile will Show Signature on Debris

The debris field from Malaysia Airlines Flight 17 is spread over a 21-kilometer radius in eastern Ukraine. It is expected to take investigators months to sort through the airplane pieces to learn about the missile that brought down the jetliner and who fired it. VOAs Carolyn Presutti explains how this work will be done.
Video

Video Treatment for Childhood Epilepsy Heats up Medical Marijuana Debate

In the United States, marijuana is classed as an illegal drug by the federal government. But nearly half the states have legalized it, to some degree. Proponents say some strains of marijuana might have exceptional health benefits, for treating pain or inflammation in chronic conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis and epilepsy. Shelley Schlender reports on a strain of medical marijuana developed in Colorado that is reputed to reduce seizures in childhood epilepsy
Video

Video Airbus Adds Metal 3D Printed Parts to New Jets

By the end of this year, European aircraft manufacturing consortium Airbus plans to deliver the first of its new, extra-wide-body passenger jets, the A350-XWB. Among other technological innovations, the new plane will also incorporate metal parts made in a 3-D printer. VOA's George Putic has more.
Video

Video AIDS Conference Welcomes Exciting Developments in HIV Treatment, Prevention

Significant strides have been made in recent years toward the treatment and prevention of HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. This year, at the International AIDS Conference, the AIDS community welcomed progress on a new pill that may prevent transmission of the deadly virus. VOA’s Anita Powell reports from Melbourne, Australia.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.

AppleAndroid