Vehicular accidents are, unfortunately, a common occurrence in the United States. People are injured or killed in crashes on our nation’s roads and highways every day. The causes of these accidents can vary but often include things like drunk driving, distracted driving, and speeding. Unfortunately, it is the leading cause of death of children and adults in the country, becoming a serious problem.
Vehicular accidents can happen at any time and any moment. It can be challenging to stop one from happening, considering that people can’t look into the future. Thankfully, the government is doing something about it. The US government is working to address this problem by implementing several programs and initiatives to prevent vehicular accidents. These efforts include public awareness campaigns, safety education programs, and improved road design.
Here are some ways that the United States government is handling vehicular accidents.
Public Awareness Campaigns
The first way is through public awareness campaigns. The government has been working to raise awareness about the dangers of driving and the importance of safety. They’ve done this by creating public service announcements, launching media campaigns, and partnering with organizations like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD).
MADD is a nonprofit that helps reduce underage drinking and driving under the influence. It was founded in 1980 after a drunk driver killed a young mother and her two children. Since then, the organization has been working to educate people about the dangers of drunk driving and to advocate for change. MADD has partnered with the US government on several public awareness campaigns.
Safety Education Programs
The second way is through safety education programs. The government offers a variety of programs to teach people about safe driving. These programs include driver’s education classes, defensive driving courses, and online resources. The most prevalent among these three programs are defensive driving courses.
Defensive driving is a type of training that teaches people how to drive defensively. The goal of defensive driving is to help people become more aware of their surroundings and make better decisions while behind the wheel. They are now very accessible with DMV-approved online defensive driving courses on the internet. Almost anyone can take this course, and it doesn’t even take up much of your time. People are likely to avoid a lot more accidents by doing this course, and it’s even required if you want to be a ride-sharer!
Improved Road Design
The government is working to make roads and highways safer by redesigning them to be more forgiving of mistakes. Many projects now include guardrails, rumble strips, and repaving uneven pavement.
Guardrails are a type of barrier used to protect people from falling off of a cliff or into oncoming traffic. They are often placed along the side of the road. Rumble strips are grooves that are cut into the pavement. They are used to alert drivers if they are veering off the road.
These changes aim to prevent accidents and make it easier for people to recover from them.
Improved Vehicle Designs
The government has also been working on changing vehicles’ designs to make them safer. They’ve done this by mandating seat belts, airbags, and electronic stability control. These changes have significantly reduced the number of injuries and deaths from vehicular accidents.
However, there are still many people who don’t buckle up. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, seatbelts saved over 14,000 lives in 2017. But if everyone had been wearing a seatbelt, that number could have been even higher.
Reducing Under-the-Influence Driving
One of the biggest causes of vehicular accidents is driving under the influence. The government has been working to reduce this by increasing patrols and checkpoints, especially during holidays and weekends. They’ve also been working to raise awareness about drunk and drugged driving dangers.
The government has made progress in reducing under-the-influence driving, but there’s still more work. In 2017, over 10,000 people were killed in drunk-driving accidents. That’s one person every 48 minutes. And drug-related driving deaths have been rising sharply in recent years. If people want to reduce the number of vehicular accidents, each individual also has to do their part.
You can stop being a part of the problem by deciding to never drive under the influence. If you see someone about to drive drunk or drugged, take their keys and call a cab or ride-sharing service. You could save a life.
While the government is doing a lot to try and prevent vehicular accidents, they can’t do it alone. Everyone needs to do their part to ensure that we’re all driving safely. Remember always to buckle up, obey the speed limit, and never drive under the influence of drugs or alcohol. By doing our part, we can make a difference and save lives.