The International Transport Forum's (ITF) recently released Road Safety Annual Report ranked South Africa the worst, out of 36 others, when it came to the number of road fatalities.
Road fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants were 27.6 deaths in 2011. In North America it was 10.4 and Australia was 5.6. But, those developing countries included in the report did not exceed South Africa's road death toll. Both Argentina and Colombia reached around 12, while Malaysia came off second worst with 23.8, according to a report that appeared in South Africa’s Mail & Guardian.
The report also estimated the economic cost of South Africa's road crashes to be R307 billion annually.
Although not a member of the ITF, South Africa joined the forum's international traffic safety data and analysis group (Irtad) in 2012 as an observer, and is one of just a handful of developing countries included in the latest road safety report, according to the Mail & Guardian.
The data was provided by the Road Traffic Management Corporation.
Provisional data for 2012 showed fatalities from crashes had decreased slightly to 12,200, as opposed to the 14,000 seen in 2011, according to the Mail & Guardian Report. Pedestrians are particularly at risk, and represent more than 35 percent of all reported fatalities.
The research noted that the motorized vehicle fleet in South Africa had doubled in the last 20 years and that between 1990 and 2011 the number of road fatalities increased by 25.