Dutch Traffic Fatalities Mark Steady Decline

Dutch Traffic Fatalities Mark Steady Decline

Last year, 650 people died in traffic accidents in the Netherlands, i.e. 11 fewer than in 2011. The number of traffic fatalities has dropped by 19.9 percent relative to 2006 according to recent figures released by Statistics Netherlands.

The traffic death toll was notably lower in 2012 among 15 to 20-year-olds and among over-80s, compared to 2011, but higher among car drivers and passengers in the age category 20-60 and among cyclists in the 60-80 age bracket. This is shown in figures published by Statistics Netherlands (CBS) and the Directorate General of Public Works and Water Management (Rijkswaterstaat), part of the Ministry of Infrastructure and Environment.

The downward trend among 15 to 20-year-olds continues. The number of young traffic deaths has been reduced by more than half since 2006. Last year, 29 young people in the 15-20 age group died in traffic accidents, i.e. 16 fewer than in 2011. The death toll was notably lower among young motorists and moped drivers.

In the 20-60 age category, the death toll rose among car drivers and passengers from 137 in 2011 to 156 in 2012. After the slump in 2011 in this category of traffic participants, the number of fatalities is now back at the level of 2010. The death toll among 60 to 80-year-old cyclists has risen further from 78 in 2011 to 96 in 2012.

A total of 95 over-80s died in traffic in 2012, a reduction by 31 relative to 2011 and approximately as many as in 2010. The most substantial reduction occurred among cyclists in 2012 (from 59 to 46), but the number of fatalities also declined among car drivers and passengers and pedestrians.

The number of traffic fatalities dropped in the province of North Brabant in 2012, but just as in the preceding years, this province has the highest death toll. North Brabant has the most extensive road system of all Dutch provinces. The death toll was also down in the provinces of Groningen and Zeeland, but was up in the eastern part of the country.

The traffic death toll has shown a downward trend since the mid-1970s, when more than 3 thousand people annually died in traffic. Since record year 1972, the number of fatalities has been reduced by 80 percent.

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