Cyprus and Greece rank 4th and 5th from the bottom, in an ETSC (European Transport Safety Council) report on urban road accident mortality, issued by the organization in Brussels. ETSC is an independent non-profit organization based in Brussels, founded in 1993 and funded through a variety of sources, including subscriptions, European Commission funds, and public and private sector support.
According to the report published earlier, urban mortality is the highest in Romania with 105 deaths per million inhabitants four times the EU average, followed by Croatia with 88 deaths per million, Serbia 74, Cyprus 60, Greece 58 and Poland 57.
The report notes that “progress” in reducing deaths has stalled in the United Kingdom, Spain and Cyprus. Progress was below the EU average in Israel, Lithuania, Finland, Hungary, Germany, Ireland, France, Sweden and the Netherlands and in any case slower than progress on rural roads. Road deaths on urban roads fell by 9% slower per year than in rural roads in Lithuania, 8% in Norway, 7% in Cyprus and Estonia, 5% in Spain, and 2% in Germany , France and Belgium.
Furthermore the report records that more than 50% of all road accidents occur on urban roads in Cyprus, Romania, Croatia, Serbia and Portugal and almost 50% in Greece. In addition, mopeds / motorcycle riders account for 43% of all urban deaths in Greece, 31% in Cyprus, 29% in Italy, 28% in France, 26% in Spain and 25% in Portugal. In particular, in the chapter of the report on Cyprus, the ETSC mentions that motorcycle drivers account for 31% of all road deaths in urban areas of Cyprus, with George Morfakis, a road safety expert noting the following:
“Mopeds are widely used on urban roads by young and inexperienced people who are mostly students or delivery service providers. Most of the young moped users ride with a learners licence and they lack proper training. The use of safety helmets is not as widespread as desired and often helmets are used they are not properly strapped.” “Moreover, a culture of respect to PTW riders is lacking among other vehicle drivers. Significant speed limit violation or inappropriate driving speeds by car drivers, motorcycle riders and occasionally moped riders contribute to the high toll. High level of other traffic code violations by all road users on urban roads, including extensive illegal parking which hinders visibility, or parking on the wrong side of the street, is another problem.” “Notwithstanding the above, an in depth study is required to provide evidence for the actual reasons for the large number of PTW deaths in Cyprus”, says George Morfakis, Road Safety Expert.
Generally, for all the countries in the report, the authors state that the main challenges for cities are the imposition of safe speed limits, as those countries that do monitor compliance with the limits, record that 35% to 75% of the speeds are exceed 50 km/h.