On 2 March 2010, The UN General Assembly adopted a resolution by which it proclaimed the period 2011-2020 as the Decade of Action for Road Safety, with the goal to stabilize and reduce the level of road traffic fatalities around the world.
On this occasion, the Minister of the Interior, Mr. Ögmundur Jonasson, appointed a working group whose task is to find ways and means to improve road traffic safety in Iceland based on following five pillars set out by the UN Decade of action project: 1. Road safety management, 2. Safer roads and mobility, 3. Safer vehicles, 4. Safer road users, and 5. Post crash response.
The working group set up by the Minister of the Interior organized a ceremonial event last Sunday, 20 November on the occasion of the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, which at the iniative of UN is held on the third Sunday of November each year since 2005.
Events took place in the town of Akureyri and in Reykjavik on the premises of the emergency unit of the National University Hospital of Iceland. The first speaker was the President of Iceland, Mr. Olafur Ragnar Grimsson. In his speech he emphasized the importance of road safety in all its aspects. His speech was followed by several speakers who are professionally involved in the aftermaths of road traffic accidents, such as in law enforcement and medicine. They related their often tragic experiences at the scene of road traffic accidents and in the emergency room when treating victims of road traffic accidents.
There was an extensive media coverage in Iceland on the occasion of the World Day Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims as well as coordinated effort to remember the victims of road traffic accidents in religious services around the country.
The message of the day was a powerful reminder to all road users to show due care in road traffic, thus preventing the often unnecessary road traffic accidents with all the cost involved, both financially and emotionally.