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874 The finnish defence forces traffic accident prevention program “Särmänä Liikenteessä” (“Be Sharp in Traffic”)
  1. Petteri Tuominen,
  2. Timo Ryynänen
  1. The Finnish DefencForces


Background (250) Young men aged 15-24 have two-fold risk for lethal accidents compared to general population. Typical accidents are speeding and lack of safety belt. Often driver is intoxicated and accident happens at night, during weekends and during summer or autumn.

Objectives (450) Together with other governmental agencies, The Finnish Defence Forces has planned and executed a traffic safety and accident prevention campaign “Särmänä liikenteessä” (“Be Sharp In Traffic”). It has been implemented in all units training conscripts from 2009. It is aimed to build awareness about risks and evoke discussion among conscripts about risks related to traffic and how to avoid risks and enhance one’s own safety behaviour.

Results (875) In Finland, About 75% of total male population serves military service as a conscript, so this program reaches most young men at risk for traffic accidents. About 4/5 of all lethal accidents occurs for men in this age group. In year 2009 in Finland youth at age 15– 24 had 74 lethal and 3021 injury leading traffic accidents. By the year 2014 this had dropped to 44 lethal and 2172 injury leading accidents. In five years lethal accidents among youth has dropped for 40% and injuries about 25%. The program includes lectures and group discussions that are targeted to raise discussion and awareness about consequences own choices and actions taken while in traffic. It emphasis concrete actions, like usage of safety belt, responsibility for friends , consequences for showing of in traffic etc.

Conclusions (375) This program has strengthen safety behaviour in traffic. It is targeted to population at greatest risk, and their friends and relatives. It reaches most of target population. In this presentation, a detailed description of program and its execution is presented.




  • Military
  • Traffic safety
  • Young men
  • Safety culture

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