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The UK has ranked as the third safest PIN country for road users, according to the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC).

The ETSC presented the findings of its 17th annual Road Safety Performance Index Report (PIN) in Brussels on the 20th of June. It found that the UK had 26 deaths per million residents in 2022, making it the joint-third safest of the 32 EU PIN-monitored countries.

Poland was awarded the 2023 PIN Award, as the country cut road deaths by 47% between 2012 and 2022, a decrease beaten only by Lithuania who received the award in 2021 for a 60% reduction. In comparison, the EU average reduction over the last decade was 22%.

The report looked at the progress the 32 PIN countries have made in reducing road deaths and serious injuries across Europe. Norway was named the top PIN country for road safety, with just 21 road deaths per million inhabitants last year.

Sweden placed second, with 22 deaths per million, and Denmark tied with the UK for third. Switzerland, Ireland, Germany and Finland are also among the safest countries, with under 35 road deaths per million residents.

The highest mortality rates are in Romania and Serbia, with 86 and 83 road deaths per million inhabitants respectively.

The research also found that 20 out of the 32 PIN countries have implemented new road safety strategies, with a further five currently developing their road safety plans. The 27 EU member states are also working towards a common target agreed for 2030, to halve the overall number of road deaths and serious injuries since 2020.

However, ETSC findings show that collectively, deaths on EU roads increased by 4% from 2021 to 2022. Only 13 of the 32 countries decreased the road mortality rate in this period. Malta and Luxembourg are among those with the largest increases in road deaths, with increases of 189% and 50% respectively.

Antonio Avenoso, ETSC executive director, said: “For Europe as a whole, more work is needed at the EU and national levels. The ‘road safety package’ announced by the European Commission in March makes some positive changes to driver licensing and could improve cross-border enforcement. The new initiative to enable cross-border recognition of driving bans is also welcome.

“At the national level, it is up to governments across Europe to strive by all means at their disposal to resume their annual reductions in numbers killed and seriously injured in line with the EU and UN targets for 2030.”

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