On January 13 in Hanoi, Vietnam, the National Traffic Safety Committee (NTSC), Vietnam’s governmental authority on road safety, officially launched its National Child Helmet Action Plan to promote child helmet use across the country.
The National Child Helmet Action Plan is coordinated by the NTSC and its department members, including the ministries of Education and Training, Information and Communications, and the Ministry of Public Security, with support from a number of local and global organizations, including the AIP Foundation, a grantee of the GRSP administered Road Safety Grants Programme funded through the Bloomberg Philanthropies Global Road Safety Programme.
In Vietnam, even though helmet use is mandatory under current law for adults and children over six years of age, child helmet use has remained significantly lower than adult use with only 1 in 3 children in major cities wearing helmets.
‘It is a peculiar and sad phenomenon that, over the past few years, we have seen very high compliance with the mandatory helmet regulation among adults while helmet use among children remains unacceptably low. Children are the future of the country and deserve the best care and attention. I hope that, through the active roles of the relevant ministries and support from international organizations and sponsors as well as strong commitment out of love from teachers and parents, every child will wear a helmet when travelling on a motorbike or electric bicycle’, said Dr. Khuat Viet Hung, Executive Vice Chairman of NTSC.
Through targetted actions and a key message of ‘Love your child, provide a helmet’, the National Child Helmet Action Plan’s primary objectives are:
- To educate and raise awareness of road users about the regulation which requires child helmet use while travelling on a motorcycle and an electric bicycle; and to increase attention and consensus on complying with the child helmet regulation.
- To improve management capabilities of governmental bodies by enhancing accountability and coordination capacity, as well as to create synergies between governmental bodies at national and local levels, socio-political organizations, and local authority in terms of planning and monitoring the child helmet regulation compliance.
- To increase helmet use rates among children, hence contribute to reducing repercussions on children.raise public awareness and create a shift in public attitude towards child helmet use and compliance with the child helmet regulation.
The main activities of the Action Plan include public awareness raising and mass media communications on child helmet use, school based education, and increased enforcement of helmet wearing regulations.