KINGSTON, Jamaica – World Class Jamaican sprinter, Asafa Powell, has endorsed the United Nations Decade of Action for Global Road Safety 2011-2020, which aims to reduce road fatalities during the next decade.
Mr. Powell signed the UN declaration at a road safety petition signing held at the headquarters of the Jamaica Automobile Association (JAA), recently.
“I support the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety. This is a very important initiative to save lives and prevent injuries around the world,” said Mr. Powell. He urged people to “just take care on the streets.”
Asafa Powell, World Class Sprinter, shows off his road safety tag in support of the UN Decade of Action for Road Safety 2011-2020 at a reception held at the headquarters of the Jamaica Automobile Association in Kingston. Powell publicly endorsed the UN Decade of Action at a reception held recently.
Earl Jarrett, Chairman of the JAA welcomed the endorsement of Mr. Powell, who is among the world’s three fastest men over 100 metres, and commented that his endorsement will give the local leg of the road safety campaign a tremendous boost.
“The UN notes that the number of deaths resulting from road crashes is now higher than the deaths caused by infectious diseases, such as malaria,” Mr. Jarrett said. “Therefore it is important for us to have all hands on deck to reduce the number of road fatalities and preserve our human capital,” he underscored.
He also announced that David Summerbell Jr., Champion Race Car Driver had also endorsed the initiative.
The signing of the of the UN Decade of Action was part of a week of activities organised by the National Road Safety Council of Jamaica (NRSCJ), the JAA, The University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus, and the Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) in advance of the May 11, launch of the worldwide campaign. The activities in Jamaica culminated with the hosting of the National Road Safety Symposium at the Mona Visitors’ Lodge and Conference at the UWI, Mona.
David Ward, Director General of the Federation Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) Foundation, who delivered the main address at the opening of the symposium, also witnessed Asafa Powell’s endorsement of the UN Decade of Action.
The FIA is the world body which governs motor sports and motor associations, such as the JAA, and is dedicated to representing the rights of clubs and motorists via campaigns and activities that promote their interests.
Among the campaigns FIA supports is the UN Decade of Action for Global Road Safety, which was declared last year by the United Nations General Assembly to spur national and global efforts to halt and reverse the increasing trend in road traffic deaths and injuries around the world.
According to the UN, some 1.3 million people die every year around the world in road traffic crashes. Half of the victims are pedestrians, pedal cyclists and “vulnerable road users,” who very often are not even able to afford a motor vehicle, but are the victims of traffic crashes.
In addition to the death toll, between 20 million and 50 million people sustain non-fatal injuries every year from road traffic collisions, and road traffic injuries are the leading cause of death among young people aged between 15 and 44.
Asafa Powell, World Class Sprinter, signs the United Nations Decade of Action for Global Road Safety 2011- 2020 in support of worldwide efforts to reduce road fatalities by 50 percent over teh 10 year period. He endorsed the UN declaration at an reception held at the Jamaica Automobile Association (JAA) in Swallowfield, St. Andrew recemtly. Observing the signing are: David Ward (left seated), Director Genreal of the Federation Internationale de l’ Automobile (FIA) Foundation; Earl Jarrett (right seated), Chairman of the JAA; and (standing from left to right) Assistant Commisioner of Police Ray Powell; Duane Ellis, General Mananger of the JAA; Paula Fletcher, Exceutive Director of the National Road Safety Council (NRSC) and Dr. Lucien Jones, Vice Chairman of the NRSC.