Every year, an estimated 1.19 deaths are reported worldwide as a result of road traffic crashes. This tragedy particularly affects children and young adults aged 5-29, making it the leading cause of death in this age group (WHO, 2023).

Palestine: A recent project was implemented to improve traffic safety near Al-Jeeb Secondary School for Boys in Jerusalem Governorate and to understand the importance of safe commutes for students. Funded by the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA) and FIA Foundation through their FIA Road Safety Grant Programme, this initiative prioritizes student safety on their way to and from school.

The project, a collaboration between the Palestinian Motor Sport and Motorcycle Federation (PMSMF), the Palestinian National Institute of Public Health, and the Ministry of Public Works and Housing, addresses key areas around the school to create a safer environment through various safety measures, including:

  • Improved Pedestrian Access: New sidewalks and pedestrian channelization guide students towards designated, clearly marked pedestrian crossings.
  • Accessibility Enhancements: Lowered curbs and access ramps at the school entrance to ensure easier access for individuals with limited mobility.
  • New Signs and Markings: New road edge markings, pedestrian crossing signs, and school zone signs increase visibility and awareness for drivers.
  • Speed Calming Measures: Measures are implemented to reduce vehicle operating speeds in the vicinity of the school.
  • Designated Parking Areas: Organized parking areas promote order and reduce traffic congestion.

This project serves as a model for enhancing school zone safety across Palestine. By following the Safe System Approach, which prioritizes safer infrastructure for children’s travel routes, similar projects have the potential to make a real difference by saving lives and preventing injuries among students, contributing to a decrease in the national and global road crash crisis for school children.

The Palestine project is part of the FIA RS Grant Programme 2023: https://starratingforschools.org/2023/09/8-projects-funded-for-safer-school-streets-fia-road-safety-grants-announced/