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World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims

21 November, 2021

World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is to remember the millions who have been killed and seriously injured on the world’s roads, and to acknowledge the cumulative toll on and suffering of all affected victims, families and communities. Tribute is paid also to the dedicated emergency crews, police and medical professionals who deal daily with the traumatic aftermath of road crashes. The World Health Organization estimates that 1.35 million people die each year on the road. The road traffic fatality rate per 100 000 population is 27.5 (compared to 9.3 in Europe) and there are demonstrated significant benefits from governments bringing laws in line with best practice against one or more risk factors. See, for example, 8 Ways to Reduce Road Fatalities Using the ‘Safe System’ Approach b:

  1. Build compact and connected cities — decrease traffic volume, trip distances and pedestrian exposure to moving vehicles; increase the use of mass transit; do not have high–speed roads passing through residential or mixed–use areas; and improve public transport corridors and street connectivity.
  2. Design smarter streets — roundabouts, narrower streets, chicanes and speed humps;
  3. provide safe mobility options — high–quality public transit (safer than traveling by car), congestion charging and parking policies;
  4. Manage speeds to safe levels — speed limits and other interventions that control speeds and separate people from traffic;
  5. Enforce existing laws and regulations — require drivers to obey the speed limit, yield to pedestrians and cyclists, wear seatbelts, avoid drunk driving, and use child restraints. Install speed and red light cameras for detection and enforcement.
  6. Improve road user education and public advocacy — thorough, highly supervised, regulated, hands–on and early driver education programs; education programmes for planners, engineers, health professionals and law enforcement officers of the various principles and action areas of a safe system approach;
  7. Require universal safe vehicle standards — minimum vehicle safety standards for seatbelts, car seat anchorages, child seats and frontal/side crash protection, brakes, tyre conditions, etc.; and
  8. Speed up emergency response and care — national or regional trauma systems, including hospital–based mobile medical teams that are trained to work efficiently with ambulance services, local police and fire services.



Image: World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims