TISPOL honours veteran Swiss safety campaigner

Published Thu, 16/06/2016 - 08:17

TISPOL recently presented its Outstanding Achievement award to veteran Swiss campaigner and politician Roland Wiederkehr, for his contribution to road safety. Roland founded the Road Cross organisation, and has been the organiser of many different projects with non-governmental groups in Switzerland. 

‘Vincent run over by two Mercedes’ was the title of a famous Swiss newspaper one morning, showing a picture of the 17-year old student who was killed by passing a pedestrian crossing. This is an example of the sort of items which have encouraged Road Cross founder Roland Wiederkehr for many years to look for solutions to make traffic safer.

In the late 1980s Roland founded a union for families of road victims from which emerged today’s Road Cross organisation.   Meanwhile Road Cross has become the most famous traffic organisation in Switzerland, with 5,000 donors and a yearly transaction volume of one million Swiss francs (£670,000). Wiederkehr and Road Cross are responsible for regular media reports about speeders, and presumably also for reducing the number of fatalities in Switzerland which dropped during the last 20 years from 1000 to below 400.  

Roland Wiederkehr was from 1987 until 2003 a member of the Swiss National Council. In this function he effected numerous political attempts in favour of traffic security, not only in his home country. Switzerland is one of the safest countries, in Europe, but he also did a ot of work Poland, where road risks are considerably higher. With his experience on the field of traffic security, Switzerland now supports Poland to reduce the high number of traffic deaths and injuries. The initiative is all thanks to Roland Wiederkehr. 

He was put in charge to arrange the content and to manage the project, and so far the following results have been achieved: 

  • In six communities/towns of the Podlaskie and the Lubuskie region the road security has improved through traffic calming measures. 
  • The training of 650 Polish superior Police officers and traffic planners was started 
  • Local police stations received an extra 12 police cars. These are unmarked but fully equipped among other things with equipment for speeding controls.  

 

Even today, aged 72, Roland Wiederkehr continues to commit himself inexhaustibly to road security.  Therefore, TISPOL is convinced to have  a worthy award winner.