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Announcements: World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims --- November 21, 2010

Approximately 1.3 million persons die and 20--50 million are injured in road traffic crashes each year worldwide (1). World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, November 21, 2010, is a day to remember those who died or were injured as a result of road traffic crashes and to show support to the disabled victims and their families who suffer because of road traffic injuries. Remembrance activities include memorial services and flower-laying ceremonies.

Road crashes are the leading cause of death among persons aged 5--34 years in the United States, the leading cause of death globally for persons aged 10--24 years, and the third leading cause of death globally among persons aged 30--44 years. The economic impact of road crashes also is substantial. In low- and middle-income countries, as classified by the World Bank, the annual cost of road traffic injuries is estimated at $100 billion dollars. Road traffic injuries cost countries an estimated 1%--2% of their gross national product (2).

Most road traffic injuries are preventable by increasing helmet, seat belt, and child restraint use; reducing drunk-driving and speeding; and developing appropriate infrastructure, such as improved road layout and design. In designating every third Sunday of November as World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, the United Nations also invited member states to implement the recommendations of the World Report on Road Traffic Injury Prevention (2), and to establish national lead agencies on road safety, along with plans to reduce road traffic deaths and injuries. In addition, the United Nations has designated 2011--2020 as the Global Decade of Action for Road Safety to address road traffic injury prevention and victim services.

Additional information on the day of remembrance is available at ( Additional information on road safety is available from the United Nations Road Safety Collaboration (, the Association for Safe International Road Travel (, Make Roads Safe, and CDC (


  1. World Health Organization. Global status report on road safety: time for action. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2009.
  2. Peden M, Scurfield R, Sleet D, et al., eds. World Health Organization. World report on road traffic injury prevention. Geneva, Switzerland: World Health Organization; 2004..

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