Death and injury due to road traffic accidents and drowning are on the rise worldwide. Today, more people die from road traffic injuries than from HIV and AIDS, tuberculosis or diarrhoeal diseases. For children and young people between the ages of 5 and 29, road traffic injuries represent the leading cause of death.
Drowning is another top killer, ranking among the ten leading causes of death for children and young people in every region of the world. More than 40 people lose their lives to drowning every hour of every day, with children under 5 years old disproportionately at risk. Boys are twice as likely to drown as girls.
These deaths are largely preventable. Yet, despite the alarming statistics, road and water safety for children and adolescents is often overlooked in public health policies.