Child and adolescent injuries
Road traffic injuries and drowning are leading causes of death among children and adolescents worldwide.
Unintentional injuries, such as road traffic crashes, drowning, falls, burns and scalds, and poisonings constitute major threats of survival for children and adolescents worldwide. For those between the ages of 5 and 19, road traffic injuries represent the leading cause of death, causing more than 600 preventable deaths among children and youth each day globally.
Drowning is another top killer, ranking among the ten leading causes of death for children and adolescents in every region of the world and as a main cause of death in multiple countries in South East Asia. More than 260 children and adolescents lose their lives to drowning every day, with those under 5 years old disproportionately at risk. Boys are twice as likely to drown as girls.
These deaths are largely preventable and evidence-based solution exist. Yet, despite the alarming statistics, road and water safety for children and adolescents is often overlooked in public health policies.
Preventing road traffic fatalities and drowning demands concerted efforts across sectors, including health, child protection, education, urban planning and environment.
UNICEF works with Governments and partners worldwide to support, develop and monitor integrated child injury–prevention programmes. UNICEF also advocates for evidence-based policy development, implementation and enforcement. Our efforts improve data collection and analysis and strengthen the capacity of Governments and communities to adopt, implement and monitor programming and policies to support the prevention and reduction of injuries.
Learn more about this consultative mechanism among UN agencies and other international partners for facilitating international cooperation on road safety.
The global plan and decade are intended to inspire national and local authorities in charge of road safety to integrate the activities proposed into their road safety policies, plans and programmes.
This guidance suggests practical steps to build back better health and safety systems, to address COVID-19 and promote safe journeys to school and active transport like walking and cycling to improve air quality, physical activity and road safety.
This handbook presents concepts, evidence, tools and promising practices to create thriving and equitable cities where children live in healthy, safe, inclusive, green and prosperous communities. By focusing on children, it provides guidance on the central role that urban planning should play in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals, from a global perspective to a local context.
This report calls for drastic action to put road safety measures in place to save lives.
The United Nations General Assembly adopted a historic resolution of global drowning prevention and recognizes that drowning affects every nation of the world and encourages all member states to take up recommend good practices.
This guide provides practical steps to reduce drowning – one of the world’s most preventable, neglected and pressing public health issues.
Publications Rights of Way Child Poverty & Road Traffic Injury in the SDGs. This advocacy research, a joint report by the FIA Foundation and UNICEF, examines the impact of road traffic injury on families living in poverty in low- and middle-income countries. As a priority in implementing the sustainable development agenda, it calls for a global policy response protecting vulnerable road users and providing a safe and healthy journey to and from school for every child.
Safe Journeys to School Are a Child’s Right is a joint report from the FIA Foundation and UNICEF. The report highlights the road traffic injury epidemic which kills 500 children every day, the impact on health and education, and proposes a focus on the school journey as a community hub for action to improve road safety and build walkable communities across the world.
This report highlights drowning prevention strategies and makes recommendations for concrete measures to be taken by national and local governments.