Death toll on roads exceeds grim forecasts

18th April 2006, Comments 0 comments

18 April 2006, MADRID — The number of people killed on Spanish roads during Easter was 108 – beating a grim prediction by traffic authorities.

18 April 2006

MADRID — The number of people killed on Spanish roads during Easter was 108 – beating a grim prediction by traffic authorities.

Sixty people were also seriously injured in 89 crashes.

Traffic authorities, in an effort to urge drivers to take more care, issued a radical advertisement in which a driver was asked if they thought they would die during the holiday week.

The advertisement explained it had been predicted statistically that 100 people would lose their lives during what is traditionally one of the most dangerous times of the year to drive.

The death toll was higher than last year when 105 people were killed.

But the record for recent years was in 1990 when 192 people lost their lives in fatal crashes.

In the worst accident, two boy scouts, aged nine and 15, and two supervisors, aged 20 and 24, died when the coach carrying their party of scouts home overturned in Asturias in northern Spain on Sunday.

The reasons behind the crash were not clear as the driver tested negative in a breathalyzer test and had not been speeding.

In another crash, near Pontevedra in Galicia, five people were killed when a car collided with two scooters.

And four people were killed when two cars crashed head-on near Valencia on Saturday. One of the cars had been stolen.

Despite the high number of deaths, Federico Fernández, deputy director of the Spanish road authorities, said its publicity campaign had been a success because it alerted people to the dangers of driving at this time of the year when Spaniards make an estimated 15 million journeys.

Spain has one of the worst records in Europe for fatal road crashes.

In 2004, 4,749 people were killed. The figure was worse in France and Germany.

In the European Union, Spain has on average 113 deaths per million of population, while Britain has 56.

Latvia is the worst with 220, while Malta is the safest with 33.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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