The death toll from traffic accidents in Indonesia has reached around 30,000 per year, a frightening figure that dwarfs the number of deaths related to crime or acts of terrorism combined.
“Think of the approximately 28,000 to 30,000 people who die on the road per year because of accidents. Compared to terrorism and crime (the difference) is huge,” National Traffic Police Chief Royke Lumowa said, as quoted by Detik.
Speaking at the sidelines of the ASEAN Traffic Police Forum at Hotel Borobudur in Central Jakarta, Royke explained that the main cause of fatal accidents on Indonesia’s roads were high-speed impacts – something the police needs to address by focusing on better-enforcing traffic rules, particularly speed limits.
He added that the issue does not normally attract media attention in Indonesia because they happen regularly, with each accident generating low numbers of casualties. However, if the figures are put together, the number is staggering.
While Indonesia’s traffic fatality rate has dropped notably since 2013 when a World Health Organization (WHO) data recorded 38,000 fatal accidents or 11.5 people per 100,000 in Indonesia, it is still a long way behind neighbours Singapore which in 2013 has an accident rate of only 3.6 people per 100,000. Royke said Singapore’s low traffic fatality level owes much to the country’s ability to regulate traffic and use supporting technology like speed cameras and electronic toll gates.