Road safety has been the buzzword for the Land Transportation Office (LTO) under new chief Jay Art Tugade and the Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Jaime Bautista.

According to DOTr Secretary Bautista, around 12,000 Filipinos across the nation die every year due to road crashes. That data indicates that more than 33 people die daily from accidents involving vehicles, motorcycles, bicycles, and pedestrians.

That number seems a bit high, but it is the number that the DOTr is going with. And to raise awareness, the Department recently held its first Road Safety Symposium to underscore the shared responsibility of every Filipino to help reduce or even eliminate road-related injuries and deaths. This event is an offshoot of the National Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, Survivors, and Their Families, which was held last Sunday.

"No one deserves the loss of opportunities due to road incidents. Consider yourselves road safety champions. We have shared responsibility to protect every Filipino on the road," said Bautista.

Secretary Bautista added that part of his agenda is to seek justice for those who have died and even sustained injuries caused by road accidents. He adds that road crashes cause trauma and productivity loss that leads to economic and financial losses, which has a severe social impact on the victims and their families.

“We should not diminish the importance of attaining justice for victims of road crashes and seeking peace for the families left behind," added Bautista.