Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Vision Zero - - why it should be nationwide


That's the total number of deaths from all automobile accidents in 2013, nationwide.  That's 32,719 too many deaths.  3,154 deaths are related to distracted driving.  600,000 drivers are using cellphones while driving at any time during the day.  Then there is the untold number of accidents caused by drivers breaking the simplest of laws to follow:  obeying STOP signs, yielding to right-of-way, maintaining at or near speed limits, especially on populated streets.  Google the news feed with adding "accident" after each phrase; "Texting while driving", "STOP sign" or "DWI" and you will always get at least one news story about a tragic accident which seriously injured or killed someone related to distracted and dangerous driving practices. 

Here are some more sobering statistics:

  • 10,076 deaths in 2013 were attributed to a DWI driver
  • 36 percent of all fatal crashes in 2009 were at STOP signed intersections - - 11 percent more than fatalities which had no traffic control devices (STOP/YIELD signs or traffic signals) at 25 percent
  • Speeding was the cause of 9.613 deaths in 2013 or 29 percent of all fatalities. 
  • Rubbernecking, the dangerous and stupid act of gawking at an accident scene or something unrelated to the road while driving - - even when the accident is on the opposite side/direction of the roadway, is not only a major source of unnecessary traffic delays (like NY State drivers starting at the new Tappan Zee Bridge which us under construction) - - it caused more accidents like this incident in Sacramento, CA - uploaded a user named @Cindy046 in 2014 - - watch the number of rubberneckers causing MORE than one accident.   EDIT:  I found the same video from a CBS local station capturing it live. 

One traffic-related death is one too many -  this is why Vision Zero is being implemented in cities such as New York, San Francisco, and recently, Washington D.C..  Vision Zero is modeled after Sweden's Vision Zero to eliminate traffic deaths by implementing various public policies and laws.  In NYC, the speed limit was lowered in  November, 2014 to 25 MPH except where posted.

Now, I started a new Facebook page about two weeks ago which is devoted to a Nationwide Vision Zero - - we must reach out to every diver that running STOP signs, texting while driving, drunk/impaired driving, excessive speeding and reckless driving are unacceptable, illegal and dangerous.   You can't read a daily dose of stories across the nation right here.  Of course we cannot eliminate all accidents but we can at least try educating the public that the simplest of laws most drivers break can lead to avoidable accidents.  Please drive carefully and obey the law. 

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