Thursday, August 04, 2016
Finnish Roads Used To Be Ten Times More Dangerous - Here's Why
Via Business Insider: It's safer than ever to use the roads in Finland. Even though Finns drive almost twice as much today as they did in 1972, the number of deaths in road traffic is only about one tenth. Accidents and injuries are actually at the lowest levels ever and the number of deaths reported are lower than any other year except for 2014, according to public broadcaster Yle. In the 1970s, driving in Finland was a totally different experience than it is today. For instance, you didn't have to worry too much about driving while drunk, according to Yle. In 1972, a record number of 1.156 people died on Finnish roads. Finnish roads can be scenic. And these days they are safe. In a speech, the Finnish president Urho Kekkonen pointed out that the number of deaths in Finland for every 10.000 cars was 13.7, whereas in neighboring Sweden the number was barely half of that, 5.7. Something was not right on the Finnish roads, he noted. "Very quickly afterwards came 80 kilometers an hour speed limits, seat belts, alcohol restrictions and helmets for motorcyclists", says Petri Jääskeläinen of the Transport Safety Agency to Yle. Today, the number of road fatalities per 100.000 inhabitants per year in Finland according to the World Health Organization is 4.8, just above Japan's 4.7. Sweden is the world's third safest country at 2.8. The average rate in the world is 17.4.