iRAP congratulates the Ministry of Public Works and Transport and National Road Safety Committee of the Lao People’s Democratic Republic on their combined 2021-2030 National Road Safety Strategy and 2021-2025 Action Plan which includes 3-star or better targets for infrastructure safety and the requirement to complete an iRAP assessment of three cities.
The Strategy includes medium term safety targets for highways to achieve at least 3-stars in line with targets set for the ASEAN highway network, and for greater than 75% of travel on major city roads to be 3-stars or higher by 2025.
An action plan and budget has also been allocated to undertake an iRAP assessment of major roads and highways in the cities of Vientiane, Savannakhet and Champasak to determine baseline safety data by 2022. A budget of 8.84 billion Laotian KIP (approximately USD$484,000) has been allocated to the Department of Roads, Ministry of Public Works and Transport for this purpose.
The national strategy and action plan aim to implement the resolution of the 11th General Conference of the Lao People’s Revolutionary Party and the 9th Economic-Social Development Plan for the period of 2021-2025.
The strategy recognises increasing socio-economic development in recent years which has improved people’s lives, along with vehicle and road use. However the implementation of laws and regulations has not kept pace. The design and management of the country’s roads has also not yet adequately focused on solving safety issues to protect road users and control the speed of drivers in community areas and villages.
The strategy calls on all domestic and foreign organizations, and the people of Lao, to participate in the implementation of the strategy to reduce road crashes and reduce road trauma.
By 2035, the road safety vision of Lao PDR is to reduce the rate of deaths and serious injuries to 70%:
Partner-led iRAP activity has already assessed 86 km of roads and designs, influencing the safety of US$166 million of road infrastructure investment in Lao PDR. 8 people have benefited from iRAP global/on-line training.
According to iRAP’s Safety Insights Explorer, achieving UN Target 4 for greater than 75% of travel on 3-star or better roads for all road users in the country by 2030 stands to save an estimated 83,397 lives over the 20-year life of road treatments with an economic benefit of USD$4 billion – $5.20 for every $1 spent.
Images credit: Pexels/Anniikaa and iRAP