BEIRUT: Lebanon’s Internal Security Forces launched a pilot road-safety project Friday to begin monitoring and enforcing traffic laws on a stretch of the coastal highway starting at the end of May.
The project, entitled “We got together so that no road separates us,” will monitor and collect data on the stretch of highway from Jbeil to Antelias, where the highest frequencies of accidents in the country are reported.
The action plan for the new project says that the ISF will enforce traffic laws related to speeding and drunk driving as well as preparing a road-safety curriculum, raising awareness on the dangers of speeding and driving under the influence of alcohol, improving the delivery of first aid to accident victims, and improving road-safety structure. Driving under the influence of alcohol and speeding are not commonly penalized in Lebanon.
The project brings together a number of ministries and organizations from the public and private sector as well as civil society.
“It’s the first time all these groups have sat together at the same table,” the regional director of the Global Road Safety Partnership, Samar Abouraad, said addressing a small crowd at a press conference at the ISF headquarters in Ashrafieh. The Global Road Safety Partnership is overseeing the project, which is part of the EU-funded EuroMed Road Safety Program. Abouraad added that the project would be supported over an extended period and “would not just stop after one week.”
Marcello Mori, head of Infrastructure and Local Development in the EU’s delegation to Lebanon, said that road safety was linked to socio-economic development and good governance.