According to Iran’s state media reports, in the first half of 2021, some 8,644 people lost their lives in road accidents in Iran. A figure which has grown by 9.6 percent compared to the same period last year. Nearly half a million Iranians have lost their lives in traffic accidents over the past 20 years, the media reported.
“In the first six months of this year, the number of road accidents increased by 67,000 compared to the same period last year, reaching more than 713,” said the RAHVAR police chief (Road and Traffic Police).
Iran is one of the deadliest countries in the region in traffic accidents. The highest number of road deaths in Iran in the last two decades were reported in 2005 with 27,000 deaths over the year. According to an official estimate, between 2011 and 2019, an average of more than 17,000 people were killed on Iranian roads each year.
In Iran, roads are known as ‘death roads.’ The death toll on these roads is so high that people suggest that the government should install ‘All Seasons to Die’ warning signs to warn drivers. Given the growth of the population and the increase of means of transportation, the increase of government services is considered an important necessity.
Has the Iranian government taken any action in this regard? The increase in casualties indicates that the worn-out roads and being non-standard is one of the main reasons for the high casualties.
In this regard, the state-run news agency ISNA revealed that “road casualties in Iran are higher than in many other countries and is one of the most important causes of death in Iran. The main causes of road accidents include road depreciation, worn-out vehicles, and non-compliance with traffic laws and monitoring.”
Interestingly, officials of the government admit to this tragedy and reveal the facts. “If the car has the minimum standards, it should not be easily deformed in overturning, while the Pride car is easily pressed due to overturning and the occupants are killed,” the managing director of the Safe Society Association told the state-run Quds newspaper.
Pride’s high share of road accidents in Iran made this car infamous and the people are calling this domestic product the ‘chariot of death.’
Ismaili, the former police chief, blamed all government entities for road safety and said: “They have announced that there are about 5,000 accident hotspots in the country, the repair of which requires 6 trillion tomans. So, when we cannot repair high-risk areas, we have to wait for death in those areas.”
‘The Planning and Budget Organization has not provided a legal budget for road safety and the promotion of traffic culture and education in the last 10 years while ignoring this important will cost the lives of thousands of Iranians yearly,’ said Nofarasti, CEO of the Safe Society Association.”
Now, why this budget is not given for road safety, is not without reason. Observers believe the funds are instead spent on exporting terror and pursuing Iran’s nuclear projects.
“In the public education sector, no organization considers itself responsible for education and culture, and each department acts as an island. Worse, the national media says pay me to give public education in the field of traffic safety, which is a real shame,” said the former police chief.