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Iran focuses on need to improve its road traffic safety record- 21 November 2013

From left to right: Member of Cultural Council of Ministry of Industries,
Mine and Commerce, Mr. Hojatol Eslam Taqavi- Expert from Iranian Civil
Aviation Organization, Mr. Hossein Toranji - Managing Director of
Ramtin Hospital Dr. Alireza Esmat

"Iran has 1 per cent of the world's population - but it accounts for 2 per cent of all road traffic accidents in the world," said Colonel Morad Moradi, Technical Deputy of the Tehran Traffic Police. Colonel Moradi was speaking at an event organized in Tehran to commemorate the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.

According to Tehran Traffic Police statistics, every day, on roads across Iran, an average of 60 people were killed in road traffic accidents. Mr. Moradi claimed that car accidents are the second highest cause of premature deaths among Iranian citizens. More than this, in the year 2012, over 800 people were killed in Tehran alone. "For a civilized country, this is unacceptable," he concluded.

Technical Deputy of the Tehran Traffic Police, Colonel Morad Moradi

According to the same statistics, 26.6 people in Iran are killed in road traffic accidents per 100,000 of the population. Comparable figures for other regions are as follows: 13.9 (all Asia); 16.5 (Europe) and 17.6 (world average).

UN Resident Coordinator in Iran, Mr. Gary Lewis

Addressing the same gathering of medical professionals, emergency service workers, police and reporters, organized by Iran's Ramtin Hospital, UN Resident Coordinator in Iran, Mr. Gary Lewis described global trends in road traffic accidents.

"Car crashes claim the lives of almost 1.24 million people every year, and injure as many as 50 million more, leaving some with permanent disability," he noted, while presenting the statement of the UN Secretary General, Mr. Ban Ki-moon to commemorate the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.

"Behind these statistics are grieving parents, children, siblings, colleagues and friends," he added. "Traffic accidents often take a severe financial toll, with many families reduced to poverty through either the loss of a breadwinner or the costs associated with lost income and prolonged medical care," Mr. Lewis concluded

Managing Director of Ramtin Hospital Dr. Alireza Esmat

The years 2011-2020 have been named as the international Decade of Action for Road Safety. The Decade has set a target of saving 5 million lives.

Some of the solutions recommended by the UN chief are: sidewalks, crosswalks, overpasses and roadway lighting, laws on drink-driving, speeding, wearing seatbelts and a prohibition against texting and other dangerous use of mobile phones while driving.

Master of Ceremonies, Mr. Ghasem Afshar

Follow Gary Lewis @GaryLewisUN
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