Deaths on Kazakh roads soar

>>As the number of cars on the road increases in Kazakhstan
so do the number of accidents and related deaths

STORY: On Feb. 11 Kazakhstan’s interior ministry released data on the number of road accidents last year. They made for grim reading.

In 2012, according to the date, there were 18% more car crashes on Kazakhstan’s roads compared to 2011.

These crashes killed 3,022 people (up 12% from 2011) and injured 17,488 (up nearly 25%), the interior ministry said.

The number of cars on Kazakhstan’s streets has boomed as its economy has grown. The quality of roads, street lighting and snow clearing in winter, though, is still variable. Add into this mix the relatively poor quality of driving and the large jump in road accidents and deaths, unfortunately, makes sense.

This is a problem shared by most developing countries but there also comes a tipping point when governments have to start introducing more stringent rules to test the quality of drivers, roads and cars.

In Kazakhstan, where the debris of the previous night’s car accidents can often litter a street well into the next day, the time for improved driving and safety standards must be approaching.


This story was first published in issue 46 of the weekly Silk Road Intelligencer newssheet on Feb. 15. For details on how to subscribe, click here

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