Advancing Sustainable Safety

Publication date: 
March 2006

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In the Netherlands, every year, there are around one thousand deaths and many tens of thousands road users are injured. Compared to other countries, the Netherlands performs very well, and it is one of the safest countries in the world. Currently, the Netherlands tops the world in having the lowest number of fatalities per inhabitant. Dutch road safety policy is often identified as good practice, and the Sustainable Safety vision as leading practice (Peden et al., 2004). Dutch performance commands respect.

At the same time, every year, we have to regret the fact that so many road traffic casualties occur. This represents enormous societal loss. It was calculated that this cost Dutch society nine billion Euros in 2004, including the costs of injuries and material damage caused by road crashes. These costs also comprise intangible costs that are calculated for loss of quality of life for victims and their surviving relatives (SWOV, 2005a).