Latvia's roads still among Europe's deadliest

In 2022, Latvia maintained its reputation for having one of Europe's most dangerous road networks, according to fresh data published by Eurostat April 12.

Road traffic accidents claimed the lives of 20 653 people in the EU in 2022, marking a 4% increase compared with 2021 (19 917 fatalities). The number of fatalities has been increasing for 2 consecutive years after the unprecedented drop in 2020 (18 833), which was attributed to COVID-19 restrictions affecting passenger transport and the frequency with which people went outside.

Road accident fatalities, 2022
Road accident fatalities, 2022

In 2022, there were on average 46 road traffic fatalities per million inhabitants in the EU. Taking into consideration the population of each EU country, the lowest rates of road fatalities in 2022 were registered in Sweden (22 road fatalities per million inhabitants), Denmark (26) and Ireland (31).

In contrast, the highest rates were recorded in Romania (86 road fatalities per million inhabitants), followed by Bulgaria (78), Croatia (71), Greece (63) and then Latvia and Portugal both on 60.

Both Lithuania (43) and Estonia (37) fare far better than Latvia when it comes to road deaths.

Among the Member States and the EFTA countries, Malta (2021 data), Iceland and Lithuania registered the largest decreases in persons killed in road accidents between 2017 and 2022, with decreases of 52.6 %, 43.8 % and 37.2 %, respectively.

Unfortunately much of the other data supplied by Eurostat relating to Latvia including the incidence of non-fatal road accidents and the profiles of accident victims by age and sex comes from 2020 instead of 2022, making direct comparisons tricky.

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Source datasets: tran_sf_roadus and demo_pjan


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