Messages from key politicians of countries around the world
World Day of Remembrance #WDoR2017
Remembering road traffic victims in Europe and beyond
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, commemorated on 19 November this year, calls on our societies to remember those whose life or health was damaged in a road crash. This loss can never be accepted by families and friends directly affected or by the society as a whole. In a video message Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc said: “In the EU, we have come a long way in terms reducing fatalities on our roads – but still, 70 people a day lose their lives, over 25,500 per year, and that is far, far too many. Today we remember those victims of road crashes in the past, but at the same time, we are calling for strong joint action to stop this silent killer on our roads.” UN Special Envoy for Road Safety Jean Todt added: “19th November is the World Day of Remembrance for Victims of the Road, established by the United Nations General Assembly 12 years ago. Let’s not forget that more than 1.2 million people die on the world’s roads every year. That’s 3,500 lives every single day. This loss of life is preventable and unacceptable.” The final road safety figures for 2016, just released by the Commission, confirm the 2% decrease of road fatalities in the EU compared to the previous year.
World Day of Remembrance #WDR2016
Commissioners Bulc and Andriukaitis reiterate the Commission’s commitment to safer roads and pay tribute to victims
This Sunday marks the yearly World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, an initiative endorsed by the United Nations to remember all those killed or injured on the roads. Commissioner for Transport Violeta Bulc and Commissioner for Health and Food Safety Vytenis Andriukaitis recorded a joint message to express their sympathy and reiterate the Commission’s commitment to road safety. The two Commissioners recall that “In the EU, 70 people die on the roads every single day. Moreover, each day 370 people get injured and suffer life-changing consequences. Whether we are pedestrians or cyclists, drivers or passengers, we all must behave responsibly – for our own safety and for the safety of others. Those victims are a permanent reminder of the need to do more.”
Their full message is available here. Last year, 26 100 people died in road accidents in the European Union (EU). While this represented a small increase compared with 2014, the trend over the last 20 years has been a fall in the number of road traffic victims in the EU. Compared with 1995, the number of road fatalities has been reduced by almost 38 000 persons, from nearly 64 000 to slightly over 26 000 in 2015. More information is available in the Eurostat press release here. (For more information: Anna-Kaisa Itkonen – Tel.: +32 229 56186; Alexis Perier – Tel.: +32 229 69143) .
World Day of Remembrance #WDR2015
Message from Jagat Prakash Nadda – Minister of Health, INDIA, for World Day 2015
Message from the Taoiseach – Prime Minister of Ireland, for World Day 2015
Message from Mr François Bausch, Luxembourg Minister for Sustainable Development and Infrastructure, for World Day 2015
When thinking of a message on the occasion of this year’s « Journée des Victimes de la route », a famous saying by Martin Luther King came to my mind: “I have a dream”. And yes, all of us working towards improved road safety share this dream: Vision zero. Ending traffic deaths and injuries on our streets.
The primary mission of the Luxembourgish Government is to protect its population. We all deserve and expect safe streets. In order to address this situation, each and every member of the Luxembourgish Government has committed himself by signing the “National Road Safety Chart” implying that everything will be implemented in his ministry to help reduce all levels of road fatalities.
Through its “Action plan for road safety” with 29 measures, my ministry has been working on several levels to reach that aim: prevention, education and repression.
A combination of road infrastructure improvement, along with a broad public outreach through communication campaigns and a good road safety education for youngsters is setting the frame. Additionally, this year, the penalty point license has been reformed; measures have been reinforced, above all those related to drunk driving and speeding. In February 2016, a radar system will be installed on Luxembourgish roads, intending to reduce speeding on our streets and save lives.
But a successful approach will require more than government policy and programs. It will need strong partners. Therefore I’d warmly like to thank the AVR for their incredible energy and will to help us reach our common goal through their valuable presence at all of our meetings and their assistance during safety audits.
Video Message from Jean-Claude Juncker, President European Commission, for World Day 2015
Message from UK Prime Minister David Cameron – for the World Day of Remembrance 2015
“I would like to offer my thanks and very best wishes to everyone attending this year’s World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims. Today is an opportunity to remember all those whose lives have been tragically affected by road collisions, to recognize the excellent work of our emergency services and medical professionals, and reflect on how we can make our roads safer for all who use them.
I send my heartfelt condolences to everyone who has lost loved ones in road traffic incidents. Road deaths and injuries are utterly devastating for all those affected, imposing a terrible human cost on the casualties of collisions and their families – my heart goes out to you all. Today’s services taking place up and down the country allow us to remember and pay our respects to the victims so tragically killed on our roads, and to give thanks for the heroism of our emergency services……
…..We can be proud that Britain has one of the best road safety records in the world, but each and every death is a tragedy, so we are determined to do more to make our roads even safer. The Government is committed to reducing road deaths and injuries every year. I hope that service providers, local authorities, the police, road safety professionals, the voluntary sector and, of course, road users themselves will work with us to ensure we rise to that challenge to make our record stronger still.
My thoughts are with everyone gathered together today. This comes with my heartfelt best wishes as you mark this year’s World Day of Remembrance.
Message from Michael Cramer MEP, Chairman Committee for Transport & Tourism, European Parliament, World Day of Remembrance 2014
“Speed kills – design out speeding: World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims: I rise today to remember the countless road victims worldwide and offer my sincerest condolences to their families. A day like this one also reminds us about our political responsibility to reduce these tragedies.
Speeding is the number one reason for accidents on European roads. A default speed limit of 30 km/h (20mph) in residential areas would halve both, the breaking distance as well as the reaction time and therewith reduce fatal crashes by 42%! The likelihood of an accident being fatal for pedestrians and cyclists is merely 10% at a car speed of 30 km/h but rises up to 80% at a car speed of 50 km/h. This improvement in road safety would be achieved through an increase in journey times of just 10 – 20 seconds per kilometer. By this means we are able to improve everybody´s health and the environment would benefit too, as harmful CO2 emissions would be cut by 12%, traffic smoother and less stressful, air quality improved and noise reduced by at least 3 dB (perceived as a 50% reduction in noise).
Because of this, the European Parliament decided in 2008 together with the Council to implement effective measures to improve road safety in the EU. The European Parliament has since been pushing for increased harmonisation in road traffic regulations. It also has already adopted an official recommendation to introduce an EU-wide default speed limit of 30 km/h in all residential areas and on all single-lane streets without separate bike paths in urban areas. When specific roads require an alternative speed limit, this decision should be taken at local level.
Let us work together to achieve the goal of Mission Zero!”
HON. CHRIS VAN HOLLEN OF MARYLAND, IN THE US HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 15, 2013
Mr. Speaker, I rise in recognition of World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.
This Sunday around the world, millions will pause to remember those who have died or been injured in road crashes. Every year, the list of those injured and suffering as a result of road crashes grows. This tragedy is increased by the fact that many of these deaths and injuries could have been prevented. This is a growing global epidemic predominantly impacting young people. More than 40 percent of all road traffic deaths occur among individuals under 25 years old and road crashes are the second leading cause of death for young people aged 5-25 years.
Promoting global road safety requires a focus on education, advocacy and support for targeted road safety projects in low and middle income countries where the problem is more prevalent. That is why I have been a long supporter of the Association for Safe International Road Travel (ASIRT).
World Remembrance Day is a time for the public to think about the devastating loss and suffering that still occurs because of road crashes and reminds us of how much more we must still do to bring this suffering to an end.
Message for the World Day from Mr. Siim Kallas, Vice President of the European Commission, responsible for Transport, 17.11.2013
“Last year, almost 28,000 people died in road traffic crashes in the EU. Many more suffered permanent injuries. Those who survive such crashes do not forget. Nor will the families of those killed or seriously injured. They live with the consequences of that crash every day.
The World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is an opportunity for all of us to show our respect for and sympathy with those whose lives are torn apart on the roads. It is also an opportunity to remember that we ourselves are not immortal. In the European Union, three people die on the roads every hour. They are people like you and me – going to work, walking to school, cycling home after football practice or taking the car to go shopping.
The European Commission is strongly committed to making our roads safe for all. The strategic target is to halve the number of road deaths in the ten-year period leading up to 2020. I’m proud to say that Europe is almost on track to reach that target. But the work is still far from done. Every death is still one too many.”
Message from Georges Bach, Member of the European Parliament, for World Day of Remembrance 2012
“The shadows of the past can be very dark and painful for the families and friends of the numerous road traffic victims. Remembrance of loved ones is essential to avoid that they disappear in those shadows of the past. To recognize this remembrance publicly on a world level helps to raise awareness of the danger of road traffic and avoids that traffic crashes and their painful consequences become routine.
Being a Member of the Transport Committee of the European Parliament, I did my best to convince my colleagues from all over Europe to recognise the World Day of Remembrance at the level of the European Union. Therefore I am very glad that the Plenary of the European Parliament endorsed this idea by integrating it into their resolution on European road safety 2011-2020 on 27 September 2011. We will actively continue our work for more road safety, better infrastructure and vehicle safety, and reduction of the key risk factors, such as drink-driving and speeding, in order to avoid in future as many traffic victims as possible.”
From the Message of US Congressman Hastings, 18th November 2011
“I offer my thoughts and prayers to all those who have lost loved ones to road crashes. All over the world, in every country and locality, traffic accidents remain an ongoing peril and a source of preventable tragedy. As we embark on the Decade of Action for Road Safety, we should pause to remember who it is that we are fighting for…..
…….This Day of Remembrance also calls attention to the necessary policies needed to improve transportation management, infrastructure, vehicle safety, education, and post-crash care and rehabilitation. Here in the United States it is of the utmost importance that we continue to support public policies designed to reduce key risk factors like speeding, drunk driving, distracted driving, and the failure of many Americans to use seat belts, child restraints, and other safety devices……. »
US Congress, Office of Congressman Robert Wexler, 2010
« I rise today to remember the countless victims of road crashes worldwide and offer my sincerest condolences to their families….. Globally, more than 40% of all road traffic deaths occur among individuals under 25 years old and crashes are the second leading cause of death for young people aged 5-25 years….. Road crashes also come at a great cost to the global economy….. The U.N. and World Health Organization have recognized road traffic crashes as a global health crisis and are taking action to address this growing epidemic. In 2005, the U.N. passed a resolution designating the third Sunday in November as World Day of Remembrance for Road Crash Victims. It is essential as the international community stands together in remembrance of global road traffic victims that the United States join the U.N., NGO’s, and foreign governments in commemorating this important day and work swiftly to implement polices that will prevent further needless loss of life. »
From Italy’s Minister of Infrastructure & Transport, Mr Altero Matteoli, 2010
This year also, on the occasion of the World Day for the Remembrance of Road Victims, I am very happy to express my cordial gratitude for the constant effusive commitment in the name of all those whose lives have been dramatically affected by road accidents, whose pain is rightly remembered with this celebration.
During my term of office, I made every effort to bring to completion the necessary changes to the Highway Code…and also promoting constant awareness efforts regarding this issue.
The whole community was called on to give their own contribution and many…have responded positively ensuring their proactive collaboration in the search for solutions aimed at improving safety on roads….
From the Message of Luxembourg’s Prime Minister. Mr Jean Claude Juncker, 2008
“World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims provides an opportunity to identify with road traffic victims and their families. It is also an occasion for reflecting on something which is a true scourge for humanity…..
…..World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, which is held every year on the third Sunday of November, is an opportunity to think of those who have lost their life in a road accident and to show compassion to the families left behind.
It is also an opportunity to show solidarity with those who are disabled or injured and to thank those near to them who give such invaluable help and support.
I hope that World Remembrance Day will contribute to creating a society which is more compassionate and more supportive.”
La Journée Mondiale du Souvenir des Victimes de la Route permet d’avoir une pensée émue pour les victimes de la circulation et leurs familles. Elle est également l’occasion d’évoquer un véritable fléau de l’humanité…..
….. La Journée Mondiale du Souvenir des Victimes de la Route, qui se tient chaque année le troisième dimanche en novembre, est l’occasion pour garder la mémoire de ceux qui ont perdu la vie dans un accident de la route et de témoigner aux familles endeuillées sa compassion.
Elle est également l’occasion d’exprimer la solidarité avec les personnes handicapées et blessées et de remercier leurs proches pour leur assistance et leur soutien précieux.
J’espère que la Journée Mondiale du Souvenir puisse contribuer au développement d’une société plus solidaire et plus humaine.