2014 is the 19th year since the World Day of Remembrance (WDR) for Road Traffic Victims was founded, and the 12th year since it has been a recognised United Nations global day.
Each year, on the third Sunday of November, 182 countries hold various memorials for lost and injured loved ones and their friends and families. Raising awareness around these senseless deaths needs to be a priority for all this WDR, as the death toll is already up to over one million from January 2014.
Three years ago, the United Nations and World Health Organisation put together a Global Plan for the Decade of Action for Road Safety. The slogan for 2011-2020 was agreed upon:
In recent history, the annual events have taken on a theme. The 2014 theme is Speed Kills – Design Out Speeding. This refers to pillar 3 in the Global Plan, relating to improving the technology in vehicles to include safety, crash avoidance and even speed regulation controls.
Many countries have a national memorial for the victims, and many more hold national celebrations on this day calling for peace on our roads. One of the popular memorials is called the “Light of Hope” Initiative.
The Light of Hope began on World Day of Remembrance 2007 and was the brainchild of Esperanza, the French road victim organisation. The launch of the initiative was celebrated with a transfer of light from Italy to America.
This initiative is practiced in many of the participating countries by illuminating all sorts of things from buildings to bicycles, pavements to pergolas, and churches to trees. Candles line the streets, some even put hold up lit-up cell phones during their evening activities from 18:00-12:00, but particularly between 18:00-20:00.
Another way individuals are showing solidarity is by supporting the Road Safety Fund where all proceeds go to implementing the Global_plan_Decade_of_Action_for_Road Safety. One of the ways support the Fund is buying the road safety tag or bracelet.
Lets all take action as individuals and citizens of planet earth and be safe, drive safe, live safe…always!