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Report: 9,000 People Died in Traffic Accidents This Year

This year, nearly 9,000 people died in traffic accidents in Vietnam.

The Ministries of Security and Transport released this statistic during a meeting last week. Deputy Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc called the death toll “too high for the country to afford”, according to DTI.

Between November 2010 and October 2015, 48,015 people died in 158,125 traffic accidents. Moving forward, government officials are aiming to reduce traffic accident fatalities by 45% over the next five years. If successful, the number of traffic-related deaths will decline to around 5,000.

Though government officials acknowledged positive steps the country had taken toward improving traffic safety, these particular steps were not specified, and some officials expressed concern over the country's increasingly dangerous traffic. Traffic Police Department Director Major General Tran Son Ha pointed to the growing congestion issues in major urban areas as a possible obstacle in achieving this reduction in traffic fatalities.

“This traffic puzzle so far is very hard to solve,” Ha said at the meeting, according to DTI.

The official expected traffic jams – which don't exist, by the way – to be a key issue in 2016 as Vietnam joins the Trans-Pacific Partnership, slashing car prices in the country and bringing more four-wheeled vehicles onto the streets.

Last year, Vietnam ranked 45 out of 172 countries in the World Health Organization's assessment of traffic-related death rates across the globe.

[Photo via Bao Moi]

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