New road safety campaign identifies fatality blackspots

“Give priority to life” runs till end of August

As the country’s busiest month for holidays begins, Portugal’s National Road Safety Authority (ANSR) has launched a campaign in which it identifies 175 places with the highest concentration of fatal accidents – totalling about 470 since 2018 – and calls for extra care when driving on these roads.

“Give priority to life” will run during the month of August, “a period when travel is more frequent and longer”. It aims to “appeal to all those who drive on the roads and streets to do so safely, calling on them to prioritise life and protect not only their lives but also those of their family and others”, ANSR said in a statement.

The criteria for marking these places with the highest number of accidents was based on motorways, main routes, complementary routes and national roads, where there were at least two fatal accidents within less than two kilometres, between January 2018 and April 2023.

“As a result, 175 locations were identified, which have a cumulative length of about 325 kilometres, representing 1.5% of the national road network where 468 fatalities were recorded, about a third (31%) of the total number of fatalities recorded in the period mentioned (1,527), on the roads covered by the criteria”, says ANSR.

The districts of Lisbon, Setúbal, Porto, Leiria and Aveiro have half the length of the road network (164 kilometres) with the highest number of fatal accidents, and where, in the period analysed, 232 people lost their lives (half of the deaths in these places).

Lisbon is the district with the highest number of fatalities in the places with the highest concentration of fatal accidents (53), with the stretch of the Marginal (EN6) between Carcavelos Beach and Cascais having the highest number of fatalities, not only at district level but also at national level: 12.

Next comes a section in the district of Setúbal that registered eight fatalities, and the section of the A1, in the district of Aveiro, which registered seven deaths.

The IC2, which crosses the districts of Aveiro, Coimbra, Leiria, Santarém and Lisbon, is the road with the highest number of fatalities (13) in a cumulative length of 24 kilometres and where there were 31 fatalities.

The A1 has 10 locations distributed by the districts of Porto, Aveiro, Santarém and Lisbon, with a total length of 22 kilometres and where 31 also died.

The IC1 in the districts of Beja and Setúbal registered six locations, where 20 people died, as did the EN125, where 17 people died, and the EN18, which crosses the districts of Castelo Branco, Portalegre, Évora and Beja, with 16 victims.

The EN4 in the districts of Setúbal, Évora and Portalegre recorded 18 deaths in five locations, and the EN109 in Leiria and Coimbra, 16 victims, also spread over five locations.

“In total, these seven roads represent a third of the places where fatal accidents were concentrated, and a third of the fatalities, in the reference period”, ANSR emphasises.

The campaign will be posted on billboards in urban areas and on roads, over social media, and across the Waze navigation platform. It is also available for other platforms that may be interested in publicising the information.

Road accidents are a global tragedy: 1.35 million people die every year around the world. That’s 3,700 people a day, 1 person every 24 seconds. It is the leading cause of death for people aged 5 to 24 years old“, warns ANSR, adding that “in Portugal, and despite the good results obtained in the last two decades, on average, around 600 people lose their lives on the roads and streets, a number far from the only acceptable number: zero deaths on the road”.

Source: LUSA