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Cyprus

Cost of traffic accidents €0.5bln per year

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The socio-economic cost of road accidents in Cyprus exceeds €0.5 billion per year, the House Communications Committee heard on Thursday.

Speaking to deputies, the head of Reaction, an NGO aiming to educate young people about road safety and other social issues, said since 1960, the cost of these accidents reached €7bln.

“The way this is calculated is if someone dies at the age of 25 that’s some 40 years of work and income they would have had. It also accounts for treatment in hospital, car damage, and claims by the insurance company; but the most serious cost is not included. The human pain,” Marios Stavrou told the Cyprus Mail.

He called on MPs to pass the narcotest bill as soon as possible and improve the current legislation on driving under the influence of alcohol.

According to Stavrou, the World Health Organisation has conducted studies that show the average socioeconomic cost of someone’s death is €1.2mln and that of someone seriously injured is €800,000.

This includes an average from high income and low income countries. For Cyprus, the number would be higher as it ranks amongst the high income countries, Stavrou said.

Putting his suggestion forward he said “road camera systems on Griva Dhigeni Avenue in Nicosia cost €80.000. They brought in €1.5m in income. If from this amount, €100,000 is spent to improve Griva Dhigeni Avenue we would be talking about the safest road in Cyprus.”

DISY MP Aristotelis Misos said they would review his suggestions and push forward to the ones they believed would ensure road safety.

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