Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/1999-10-25-Speech-1-079"

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"Mr President, Commissioner, firstly I would like to emphasise that any measure intended to promote road safety ought to be welcomed. That being the case, the Liberal Group intends to approve the Ferri report. Equally, we need to lay great emphasis on the fact that, looking to the future, the European Parliament is going to want to adopt a more comprehensive programme on road safety. We can no longer stand idly by when records show that every year 42,000 people are killed in road traffic accidents in Europe. “Road rage” is on the increase, which ought to make any policy maker aware that there is an urgent need for a number of measures to be drawn up and that these must be implemented in all Member States of the European Union with no concessions being made. In this connection, I would like to raise the idea of introducing a monthly traffic “barometer”. This traffic barometer would enable the competent authorities responsible for road safety in the European Union to conduct an evaluation of road safety in the Union on a monthly basis. In this way, the reasons for the lack of road safety could be investigated on a systematic basis and regular consultation would lead not only to action being taken but, most importantly of all, to policy makers becoming sensitive to the needs of road-users. Exchanging information and making road-users continuously aware of the enormous responsibility they carry when it comes to road safety will undoubtedly make a huge contribution to substantially reducing personal distress and the grief experienced by families. The Ferri report appeals to young people to be more conscious of road safety. No one doubts that young people must indeed be made aware of the dangers posed by road traffic. However, to my mind it is not just young people whom we need to direct this appeal at. In my view, all road-users, regardless of how old they are, need to be made continuously aware that only if they behave properly and courteously on the roads will it be possible to bring about a reduction in the tragically high number of road traffic victims. I was recently in the immediate vicinity when two drivers engaged in fisticuffs, as a result of which one of them died, and all because one was obstructing the other in traffic. These were two adults. When faced with dramas of this kind it makes me realise that we have an enormous problem before us. The Ferri report is a small step in the right direction. I would not wish my colleague Mr Ferri to take this to be a derogatory comment, I just mean to say that we still have a long way to go to reach the goal that we all have before us, notably to make our roads much safer places."@en1

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