Government looks to youth for improving traffic safety hinh anh 1Illustrative photo. (Photo: VNA)
More than 2,000 HCM City secondary school and university students paraded on motorbikes and electric bikes on September 19 as part of a Government programme to improve traffic-safety education.

The Ministry of Education and Training, which is organising the programme along with the National Traffic Safety Committee (NTSC), is sending helmet safety guidelines to primary schools and urging them to organise more extracurricular activities to educate students and their parents on road safety.

The programme itself is part of the ministry's National Child Helmet Action Plan, which was launched last March to increase helmet use by school students.

The guidelines were written by the ministry in consultation with the committee and Asia Injury Prevention Foundation. The committee is observing Road Safety Month in September.

Khuat Viet Hung, executive vice chairman of the committee, said 14,622 traffic accidents occurred in the first eight months of the year, which represents a 12.49 percent drop from last year.

Accidents killed 5,821 people and injured 13,234 others this year, he said, adding that the numbers were down 3.98 percent and 16 percent, respectively.

Education departments in areas with congested traffic, including HCM City and four southern provinces (Ba Ria-Vung Tau, Dong Nai, Binh Duong, and Tay Ninh), promised the ministry they would ensure children wore helmets and followed other road safety rules.

In central Quy Nhon city, NTSC in collaboration with the Binh Dinh province's People Committee and Yamaha Motor gave away 10,000 helmets to children from 17 elementary schools in the province.

Figures from the health sector show that more than 1,900 children die in road accidents every year, accounting for a quarter of all deaths.

Last year, children under the age of 18 were involved in 6.5 percent of all accidents.

More than 300 students from the central Binh Thuan province also participated in numerous activities to raise traffic safety awareness among the province's school children.

Nguyen Hoai Trung, Deputy Secretary of the Binh Thuan Youth Association, said the majority of traffic accidents could have been easily avoided if people, including school children, followed traffic safety rules.

Trung said the association will continue to bring these activities to schools located along the National Route 1A to raise awareness on traffic safety.-VNA