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Patriarch Kirill calls on drivers and pedestrians not to risk their lives on roads

November 17, 2013, 6:25 UTC+3 MOSCOW
More than 200,000 road accidents that annually take place on Russian roads claim the lives of almost 27,000 people
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MOSCOW, November 17, 5:55 /ITAR-TASS/. All Orthodox churches in Russia will pray for people who died in road accidents on Sunday on the occasion of World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims. Patriarch of Moscow and All Russian Kirill has called on Russian drivers and pedestrians not to risk lives on roads and give good faith to all measures required to ensure safe roads traffic.

Death toll from road accidents in peace time can be compared to war losses, the patriarch said.

More than 200,000 road accidents that annually take place on Russian roads claim the lives of almost 27,000 people. More than 250,000 are injured. More than 21,000 people died in road accidents in Russia in the first ten months of 2013 and over 212,000 were injured. Drivers who grossly violate road traffic rules are to blame for 88 percent of all road accidents. The most widespread causes behind road accidents include high speed, driving on the oncoming traffic lane and violation of rules of crossing intersections.

The State Road Traffic Inspectorate and the Safe Movement expert center have called on all Moscow car and motorcycle drivers to switch on their alarm signals for five minutes at 16:00 to pay tribute to the memory of people who died in road accidents.

The organizers suggest that drivers in other parts of Russia also join the action, thus drawing attention to a global problem - mortality caused by road accidents.

An idea to mark the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims came from the Road Peace British charitable foundation that has been marking the day since 1993. The Remembrance Day spread to other continents in 1998. The United Nations General Assembly urged the world community to recognize the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims and mark it every third Sunday in November in its resolution in 2005.

Twelve people die in road accidents around the globe every minute. A total of 1.3 million people annually get killed under car wheels in all countries of the world; 20-25 million people receive traumas and injuries. The number of road accidents grows from year to year.

The Word Health Organization has issued a warning, “without urgent measures, death on the road will become one of the main causes of death by 2020.

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