World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims will be commemorated on Sunday, November 20th this year – to remember the millions killed and injured on the world’s roads.
As we approach Thanksgiving, World Day offers us an opportunity to give thanks to emergency services and advocates working to eliminate road crashes.
Join Zendrive and communities around the world as we reflect on the tremendous burden and cost traffic violence inflicts on drivers, families, cities and countries. Every day, nearly 100 people die in traffic crashes in the United States. These tragedies are a public health crisis affecting millions, and we need to step up and demand action.
In the United States, traffic crashes are one of the top causes of preventable death – 35,092 people lost their lives in 2015, more than a 7% increase over the prior year. This is the most dramatic increase of traffic violence in 50 years, with 2016 on trend to be even higher.
The grief and distress experienced by this huge number of people and their loved ones is all the greater because many of the victims are young.
More than half of road fatalities occur among adults ages 15 to 44. Worldwide, motor vehicle crashes are the leading cause of death among young adults 15 to 29 and in the US, crashes are the leading cause of death for teens.
Road crashes are estimated to cost $518 billion globally, and this number is increasing. Recent findings show an expected total cost of $205 billion in the US for the first half of 2016.
World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims was first celebrated in the United Kingdom by RoadPeace in 1993.
In 1995, the European Federation of Road Traffic Victims designated this day as European Day of Remembrance. Soon thereafter, it became the World Day of Remembrance when NGOs from Africa, South America and Asia joined.
In 2000, the Pope and other religious leaders joined to remember road victims worldwide, calling it “World Day.”
In 2003, the World Health Organization created an informal network of NGOs and agencies advocating for road safety and identified areas for joint activities, dedicating this day to victims and their families.
In 2005, World Day was adopted by the UN General Assembly as “the appropriate acknowledgement for victims of road traffic crashes and their families”.
Now, on the third Sunday in November every year, World Day is commemorated across all continents, not only by NGOs advocating for road safety and road victims, but also by governments and all relevant stakeholders.
It is now more important than ever that we make a committed effort to supporting Vision Zero and other efforts to reduce the number of traffic deaths to zero. Join Zendrive in the movement towards eliminating collisions on the road by becoming an advocate for road safety.
Share these tips on driver safety with friends and family.
Show your support on social media and use hashtag #WDR2016.
Learn more about World Day at http://worlddayofremembrance.org/ and be sure to check out these organizations dedicated to road safety, including Vision Zero, RoadPeace, Association for Safe International Road Travel, European Federation of Road Traffic Victims and others. You can also interact with the new National Speed Fatality Map released by the Vision Zero Network and the National Coalition for Safer Roads.