Vision Zero Initiative
Does the Vision Zero work?

Does the Vision Zero work? The Swedish Experience

The Vision Zero approach to road safety is highly effective. Sweden has one of the world’s lowest traffic-related fatality rates - and the statistics clearly show that safety does not compromise mobility. On the contrary, increased mobility actually depends on effective road safety. 

More traffic, fewer fatalities

Traffic volume and fatality rates are partly linked to changes in economic growth. But we can clearly see that road deaths have continued to decrease despite a steady rise in traffic. This chart shows the growth in traffic volume (blue) and recorded traffic fatalities (yellow) from 1950 to the present day.

Huge potential

There are other positive effects. Fatalities involving unprotected pedestrians in Sweden have fallen by almost 50% in the last five years. The number of children killed in traffic accidents has also been cut. In 2008 the first traffic death involving a child did not occur until 22 October that year. And yet, the untapped potential remains huge. In Sweden, we could cut the death toll by a further 90% if we could eliminate technical system failures, failure to wear seat belts, speeding and drink driving - from 5 deaths per 100,000 to 0.5. This is what the Vision Zero is about: looking forward and creating strategies to take safety to new levels.

The Swedish experience can be yours

Every nation of course has its own set of issues to address in road safety. Specific conditions might differ from those in Sweden, but we believe that the will to protect the lives and health of men, women and children is a universal one. The Vision Zero Initiative offers you access to the experience and knowledge of those involved in Swedish road safety. Please see the Solutions or Get started sections for more information.