Started in the year 1993 by RoadPeace, the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims is observed on the third Sunday in the month of November every year to appropriately acknowledge the victims who died or suffered injuries from road crashes. The objective of this day is to provide a platform to the bereaved families for:
- Remembering the people who were killed or suffered serious injuries
- Acknowledging the emergency services for being the first responders and managing critical situations
- Drawing attention to trivial legal responses for road injuries and deaths
- Advocating better support to all the victims of road traffic and their families
- Promoting evidence-based actions to stop and prevent further road traffic injuries and deaths
How is World Day of Remembrance observed?
On this day, flower-laying ceremonies are conducted and remembrance services are held in the memory of the road victims who had a tragic end. Police officials, governments, communities and associations who support the families of these road victims come together with friends and families of the road victims who died or got injured to promote this day through various activities.
From media campaigns and coverage, celebrity involvement, websites dedicated to this day, DVD presentations on road crashes, information sharing through posters, internet and leaflets, advocating messages from world leaders, seminars, workshops, moments of silence, marches, processions to exhibitions and displays pictures of road crash scenes and injuries – the activities are eye-openers about the fatal accidents and agonizing casualties. These activities are conducted across every continent in many countries.
How did it all start?
As per the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention, one of the major reasons for death in individuals between 5 and 34 years is road accidents! In fact, globally it is the chief reason for death for kids and young individuals aged between 10 – 24 years. Every 6 seconds, someone is injured or killed on the roads, which includes passengers, bicyclists, motorcyclists, pedestrians and even drivers. Globally, road crashes are the third major reason for death among individuals aged between 30 – 40 years.
In the year 1993, RoadPeace was the first to observe, World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims and since then this day has been solemnized by NGOs (non-governmental organizations) in many countries. This day is promoted, honored and sanctified worldwide by various non-governmental agencies which include FEVR (European Federation of Road Traffic Victims) and other associated organizations namely Global Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety and International Road Victims’ Partnership (IRVP).
In the year 2005, on October 26th, the United Nations sanctioned this day globally to appropriately acknowledge the victims of road casualties and their families.
Symbols of remembrance
Road Peace promotes the day with the image of a red, bleeding flower with the words “Remember Me” on a black background. The emblem of WHO is also present during the promotions of the day. In the year 1948, during the first World Health Assembly, the emblem was chosen and it is related to the promotional material of the UN’s World Health Day.
19th November 2023 – The 30th Anniversary of World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims
Every year more numbers are added to the existing toll and over 50 million have been killed, while hundreds of millions are brutally injured since the first road mishap, which was around 125 years ago. Road accidents are the actual pandemic which has a devastating impact on families, communities and countries. That’s why during the new Decade of Action 2021-2030, World Day plays a vital role in achieving a 50% reduction target on road casualties.