More accidents but fewer fatalities in Medellín
Despite efforts to reduce accidents in Medellín, 900 more have already been reported this year compared to the first four months of last year. As of April 23rd, the Transportation Department had reported 12,758 accidents which have left 7,788 people injured. Fatalities, however, have declined; while this year 72 people have been killed in traffic accidents, last year there were 90 dead by the same date.
Medellín’s City Council is thinking of penalizing the Transportation Department if it fails to meet accident reduction goals. The proposal is based on a practice applied in Rome, Italy, where authorities are fined if they fail to meet certain goals, and a recent decision by the Superintendent of Ports and Transportation to impose hefty fines on national transportation organizations that fail to present strategies they are applying to fight illegality in transportation.
“If despite the resources we must approve, the campaigns, the control mechanisms and measures, they still can’t reduce accidents by at least five percent, the Department should be sanctioned,” explained Councilman Rober Bohorquez. “And let it be clear,” he added, “that I am on the Mayor and the Transportation Department’s side. But everyone’s commitment is to improve conditions on the streets of Medellín.”