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UN Decade of Action for Road Safety in Crete

Inauguration of a sculpture dedicated to the UN and the Decade of Action for Road Safety in Chania, Crete


On Sunday 20 November 2011, the world day of remembrance of victims of road accidents, a memorial sculpture dedicated to the United Nations Decade of Action for Road Safety (2011-2020) was unveiled  at the Park "Christos Polentas" in Chania, Crete.

The sculpture represents an olive-tree growing on the wild rocks of Crete, with five roots symbolizing the permanent members of UN Security Council, five branches representing the world’s continents and one hundred ninety-three leaves representing the number of UN member States.

The ceremony was organized by the regional Vice-Governor of Chania Mr. Apostolos Voulgarakis, the mayor of Platania Mr. Malandrakis and the President of the Association for Support and Solidarity to Families of victims of road traffic accidents Mr. Stavros Polentas.

The ceremony included a memorial service for victims of road crashes as well as a speech by the representative of the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Mr. Michalis Adamantiadis, who also unveiled the memorial sculpture of the UN and raised the UN flag. Mr. Adamantiadis thanked Mr. Polentas for his initiatives with the Park and the memorial sculpture for the UN Decade, highlighted the global scale of road traffic casualties which reach 1.3 million annually and added:  “Road safety is the responsibility of each and every one of us. We all have to drive responsibly and carefully and abide by traffic rules. Authorities, agencies and citizens must join forces to tackle this huge problem. Let us honour those who have lost their lives on the world's roads by acting to save the lives of others”.

The by the regional Vice-Governor of Chania Mr. Apostolos Voulgarakis stressed that road traffic safety is a major public health issue and stated "I hope this monument will inspire a new collective consciousness regarding the management and review of all those factors and practices that prove fatal for Greek drivers.

"Representatives of police and military authorities were also present, as well as local government, representatives of the Parliament, local and national media,  automobile and motor bicycle Associations, first aid agencies, hospitals, schools, members of the families of the victims and as many as 1,000 other participants from Chania and other parts of Crete.


Statement (Greek): PDF

Presentation of the inauguration (Greek): PDF

UNECE Weekly (English): PDF

Video (short version)


Video (longer version)


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