site.btaBulgaria Hosts International Roadpol Conference
Bulgaria is hosting an international conference of the European Roads Policing Network (ROADPOL), the Interior Ministry said on Wednesday. The conference is attended by police officers from 29 countries who will share good practices and jointly identify future actions to tackle road safety challenges.
The event is taking place in Sofia Tech Park’s John Atanasoff Hall.
In his opening remarks, Bulgarian Deputy Interior Minister Stoyan Temelakiev said everybody is all aware that speed in urban environments is a problem and the idea of limiting the speed to 30 km/h in urban areas is gaining increasingly wider acceptance but it will take more convincing before all citizens agree that the measure is necessary. "The goal is to eliminate traffic fatalities, which is difficult but not impossible," Temelakiev said.
He also reported that the number of casualties have been brought down to under 600 in the last two years: 561 in 2021 and 531 in 2022.
Atanas Ilkov, head of the National Police General Directorate, said that there was an increase in the number of serious accidents reported in 17 Bulgarian districts from January 1 to August 31, 2023, compared to 2022. The largest increase was in Sofia. There was, however, a decrease in 10 districts; the largest ones were reported in the northeastern town of Silistra and the north-central city of Lovech.
According to the data presented by Ilkov, 4,517 serious accidents were reported in this country for the stated period. They left 341 people dead and 5,952 injured. Compared to the same period in 2022, 255 more road accidents were reported, with four more fatalities and an increased number of injured. The highest number of serious accidents occurred in Plovdiv, Varna and Sofia.
The Roadpol conference is being held along with an exhibition on road safety.