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  1. Barry Pless
  1. Correspondence to Dr Barry Pless, Retired, 434 Lansdowne, Westmount H3Y2V2, Quebec, Canada; barry.pless{at}mcgill.ca

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September 11 anniversary: lessons learnt?

This is being written on the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attack on the World Trade Center in New York. I feel certain everyone at the journal shares my sorry and sad recollections of this event. At the time, as editor, I wrote: ‘No one needs a reminder of the grisly, almost unbelievable images. But as editor of a journal called Injury Prevention I feel compelled to ask how this might have been prevented? It is all too easy to blame lax airport security, or the policies of countries such as my own that allegedly permit terrorist organisations to raise money on their soil. We need to better understand what drives the terrorists, and somehow this seems to go beyond politics, the inequities of history, or perceived threats to religion. No matter what, deep down I cannot accept that acts of revenge that involve the deaths of other innocent civilians are the answer. I trust, however, that no one will disagree that whatever else we do, we must pray hard and work harder for world peace.’

Ed note: Ten years later, I wonder which of the lessons we have really learnt.

Reducing speed limits ‘no solution’?

An intriguing article from South Africa quotes a trade union representative who is opposed to reducing speed limits from 120 km/h to 100 km/h. The writer insists that the problems of South African road users are fundamentally different from the problems elsewhere and that ‘changing the speed limit … will achieve nothing’. Instead, he argues, other measures are needed. These …

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