Israel achieves lowest-ever car accident fatality rate

The number of people killed on the roads in Israel in 2018 is 309, compared with 357 in 2017.

By Jack Gold, World Israel News

The average number of fatalities in road accidents in Israel in 2018 was the lowest rate ever recorded in the Jewish state, with 309 killed on the roads, compared with 357 killed in 2017.

According to the Transportation Ministry’s annual road accidents report cited by Israel Hayom, there was a significant decrease in the number of fatalities, with the number of deaths per a billion kilometers standing at five, compared with 6.1 in 2017 and 5.8 in 2012.

Similarly, the calculation of road-related deaths per 100,000 residents indicated that 2018 was the safest year to date. Road-related deaths in 2018 were 3.5 deaths per 100,000 residents, compared with 4.1 deaths in 2017 and 3.7 in 2012. This calculation takes into consideration the increase in kilometers traveled and the growth in population over the last decade.

The total number of kilometers traveled in 2018 has reached some 62 billion kilometers, compared with 50 billion kilometers driven in 2012, an increase of 25 percent.

The last decade shows a 30-percent drop in the number of fatalities on the road, despite the fact that the travel has increased by more than 30 percent.

According to Dr. Shai Sofer, chief scientist at the Ministry of Transportation, since the middle of 2017 there has been a clear decrease in the number of road accidents in almost all the parameters and sectors in Israel. The trend began in August 2017 and continued more intensively in 2018.

Sofer attributes the overall decline in the number of fatalities to two main factors.

First is “the significant improvement in the transportation infrastructure in Israel, including the construction of interchanges and bridges, level separation and treatment of risk focal points.” The data indicate that in all places where the risk has been addressed and neutralized, there was a decrease of tens of percent in the number of fatalities.

The second main reason is the “assimilation of life-saving safety systems in hundreds of thousands of vehicles in Israel,” Sofer said.

Minister of Transportation Yisrael Katz noted that in recent years, his ministry has been catching up on decades of lagging in investment in transportation infrastructure, especially regarding public transportation.

Sofer stressed that the driver’s behavior is the most significant factor.