Automotive transport is a major element of the society we live in today, and life without motor vehicles is now unthinkable for most of us. At the same time, with the ever-growing use of motorized vehicles around the world, the increasing toll in lives lost and social cost from traffic accidents is an issue that we cannot ignore. The World Health Organization report “GLOBAL STATUS REPORT ON ROAD SAFETY 2013-SUPPORTING A DECADE OF ACTION” shows that there were 1.24 million deaths on the world’s roads in 2010 with an estimated 20 to 50 million non-fatal injuries resulting from traffic accidents.
Current trends suggest that unless urgent action is taken, road traffic deaths will become the fifth leading cause of death by 2030.
In Japan, industry, government and academia have joined forces to introduce new traffic safety measures which have resulted in a significant reduction in the frequency of traffic accidents, and resulting fatalities and injuries. If we are to achieve our goal of creating a society with zero fatalities and injuries from traffic accidents, current safety measures are insufficient. New initiatives must be developed from a new viewpoint.
There are three elements to a traffic accident: human, vehicle, and road infrastructure. There is still a lot we do not know about the human element, and experts have struggled to develop appropriate measures for this aspect of accidents. Despite many traffic safety education programs, and different campaigns designed to improve drivers’ hazard identification, judgment, and vehicle operation, there are still a great many unknowns waiting to be researched.
Takata Foundation was established as a means to achieve the goal of zero traffic accident fatalities and injuries and represents our refusal to accept traffic accidents as a necessary result of the motorization of society. Takata Foundation works to provide a forum for specialists and supporters of traffic safety to freely bring together and research new concepts, in the hope that the outcomes and knowledge gained can support the achievement of our goals. We aim to contribute to a peaceful motorized society, supporting surveys, research and educational activities with a strong focus on the human aspect.
Looking ahead, we plan to become a supporter of traffic safety in Japan and around the globe, by developing and supporting effective human-focused research activities, campaigns and research conferences. And we hope to grow Takata Foundation through the cooperation and support of likeminded organizations and individuals wishing to join us in our efforts.