The Red Cross launches its European Road Safety Campaign 2007- 2008

Today the Red Cross will give first aid training to more than 80 participants in the European Road Safety Day event organised by the European Commission in the Charlemagne building between 11h00 and 16h00. By doing so, the Red Cross officially launches its new road safety campaign aiming at contributing to the European Commission's target of halving the number of road victims by 2010.

Jacques Barrot, Vice-President of the European Commission in charge of transport matters, said: "I very much welcome the launch of this campaign on the First European Road Safety Day, and the European Commission is proud of being one of the campaign's sponsors. The objective of making our roads safer is one that we all share — and one where we can all make a contribution."

This campaign will focus specifically on:

&bull increasing European visibility for road safety issues

&bull collecting best practice tools for road safety and first aid and proactively sharing this throughout Europe

&bull encouraging individuals, communities, organisations and governments to improve road safety.

Between April 2007 and June 2008, National Red Cross Societies will deliver programmes to increase awareness, knowledge and respect of road safety rules and behaviours as well as to promote first aid amongst the general public.

The main outcome of the campaign will be the production of a road safety and first aid resource pack which will focus on 3 key themes:

&bull raising awareness (by involving the public, communication, media and PR)

&bull influencing behaviour (through formal/non-formal education for children aged 7-11)

&bull building community capacity - how to mobilise communities to take action to reduce road traffic accidents in their neighbourhoods.

The resource pack will provide the Red Cross, other road safety agencies and multipliers throughout Europe with tested materials in order to operate programmes that best tackle the issues in their country. The pack will be easily accessible and available for free on the campaign website

Over 57% of all road victims die in the first minutes after the crash, before the arrival of the emergency services. First aid is a cost-effective, safe and simple way to save lives in an emergency. In Europe the Red Cross, as a leading provider of first aid, endeavours to make first aid education compulsory at different stages of life and promote the road safety culture.