I Voted to make Europe’s Roads Safer
I voted to approve new features to be introduced in new vehicles as of 2022 to further reduce the number of road fatalities. In 2017, 25,300 people died on EU roads and 135,000 were seriously injured. The measures adopted today are expected to drastically decrease traffic victims; among them are an Intelligent Speed Assistance, automated emergency breaking, advanced driver distraction warning, emergency lane keeping, reversing detection system, alcohol interlock installation facilitation and emergency stop signal, and Event Data Recorders, black boxes that will provide crucial information for accident analysis.
S&D spokesperson on this file, Olga Sehnalová MEP, said:
“Today’s vote will help save lives. New technologies can assist drivers in avoiding accidents, while ensuring that the control of the vehicle stays behind the wheel.
“Some of the original proposals of the European Commission raised data privacy concerns. Our Group managed to limit the analysis of black boxes crash-related data to a few seconds before the accident. Moreover, we ensured that no accident means no access to the black box or any of its data. Rumours that GPS tracking systems recording data of all activity of a vehicle will be installed are just that: rumours. There won’t be any speed limiters in cars either. Intelligent speed assistance is about informing the driver when they are above the speed limit but it always remains overridable.
“I am proud that we managed to strengthen the previsions for direct visibility. Many fatal accidents in cities happen when trucks turn off and run over pedestrians or cyclists moving in their blind spot. From now on truck cabins will have to be designed to increase the direct vision of its driver. This will save countless lives.”
Nicola Danti S&D spokesperson on the internal market added:
“In the past two decades, road fatalities have more than halved thanks to EU safety regulations. However, every person dying in a road accident is still one too many. During the negotiations, we stood up for ambitious and realistic measures without forgetting to protect the driver’s privacy. The new rules will make advanced safety equipment mandatory in all new road vehicles sold on the EU market. When safety belts were first introduced, they faced resistance and were mocked at – now we put them on naturally. The same will happen with the new measures, once people realise they save lives. Especially, the most vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians or cyclists, will be better protected.”