10 MAY - #Zeromeanslife has been unveiled as the new hashtag to be used for promoting ROADPOL's flagship public awareness campaign – the ROADPOL Safety Days.
The new communication tool to unite and strengthen the campaign's social media presence was presented by ROADPOL's Chief of Operational Working Group Marijke Eskes at the campaign kick-off event carried out at the Bulgarian Police headquarters in Sofia.
The venue was also attended by ROADPOL's General Secretary Sanja Veic, the Bulgarian Vice-Prime Minister and Minister of Interior Ivan Demerdzhiev, Chief of Bulgarian National Policе Atanas Ilkov, Chief of Bulgarian Road Police Dimitar Michev, numerous police professionals and representatives of national media.
In her speech Mrs. Eskes, herself Head of the Traffic enforcement and CCTV department of the police in Central Netherlands, said: “The ROADPOL Safety Days are the most important of ROADPOL projects in the field of raising public awareness. That is why I am grateful to be here in Bulgaria and point out the importance of this campaign. The aim of it is to reduce the number of fatal road accidents to zero. We are glad to see that with the efforts of governments, private companies, road authorities, police and others in past campaigns we have proved the they day with ZERO fatalities on the roads of Europe is not a dream. It is achievable. Every year on the day when we count the fatalities, it appears, that with our efforts we manage to stay beneath the average number. That is why we are trying to encourage more stakeholders to join the ROADPOL Safety Days. It is a low-cost project running in partnership with the police and road safety stakeholders. And it does make a difference, we can conclude that”.
Mrs. Eskes pointed out that ROADPOL Safety Days public communication should target new trends that emerge hampering road safety in present day - distraction, bicycle crashes and the problems with heavy goods vehicles. “We are convinced that besides all the checks, publicity, and projects, especially using social media can make our campaign bigger and bigger. So that every citizen of Europe would think before driving. Spread the word and use the #zeromeanslife hashtag. Stay alive and save lives”, Mrs. Eskes appealed.
ROADPOL General Secretary Mrs. Veic emphasized that the main task of ROADPOL Safety Days is to reduce the number of road casualties by engaging the community at large and spreading the concept that enhanced road safety can only be achieved if institutional efforts are complemented by the efforts and responsibility of every single road user.
Mr. Demerdzhiev announced: “The occasion that brought us together today is to kick off the ROADPOL Safety Days. I am glad that this year this will be done in our country. We have achieved success in this annual initiative. Since 2016, Bulgaria has achieved the goal of ZERO road fatalities during the campaign three times. This proves that united, all of us - institutions, media and society we can achieve it this year and the following years”.