ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan24) – The Traffic Safety Group in the Kurdistan Region on Sunday warned about the traffic situation in the country pointing to the deaths and injuries of thousands of people every year.
Nov. 20 marked the World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims.
In a statement, the Traffic Safety Group called on the Kurdistan Region Parliament, governors, and private sector companies to improve road safety in the Region.
Hiwa Kardoyi, the head of the group, stated the data regarding the condition of roads was “dangerous.”
Moreover, Kardoyi warned it might get worse, calling on the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) administration to develop the safety of the roads.
According to the statistics the Safety Group obtained from the Kurdistan Region traffic directorates, every year, over 1,000 people are killed, and 11,000 are wounded due to car accidents.
The traffic group is a civil organization founded in 2007, and its headquarters is located in the Province of Sulaimani.
The group believed the statistics were dangerous relative to the population of the Kurdistan Region.
Additionally, they compared the Region’s number of car accidents per year with Sweden’s which was considerably lower at around 250 deaths per year.
In the statement, the Traffic Safety Group mentioned the cause of a large number of car accidents in the Kurdistan Region was related to bad roads and lack of driving awareness.
The group also called for promoting driving awareness in the Region.
“Awareness for traffic safety can’t be done alone by the traffic directorates, but by other sectors of the government through organizing projects,” Kardoyi stated.
“Decreasing the number of casualties can’t be done easily, we lack experts in this field,” he continued.
Kardoyi noted traffic safety had been ignored due to “the financial crisis, Islamic State (IS) war, halt of the Kurdistan Region Parliament, and lack of the KRG’s commitment to that sector.”
Kurdistan has a population of almost six million people in addition to 1.8 million refugees and Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) who fled from Syria and other parts of Iraq due to the threat of IS attacks.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany