The U.S. Media Needs to Follow Guidelines for Highway Safety Issues and Road Crash Reports

Whenever a forensic crash investigation has not been completed — something which typically takes many days — it is very unwise for anyone at a crash scene to speculate about the cause of the incident. It is not rare for things that look obvious to prove entirely inaccurate.

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Factors Which Contribute to Road Crashes — a list of 78

It is a well-known fact that a mere handful of crash-types are the major killers on roads.  These include impaired driving, distracted driving, drowsy driving, speed, vulnerable road users, and so on.  However, although these are indeed the biggest issues, this is not the full story and it is regrettable that people aren’t made more aware of the many other factors and causes.

Only the causes of the crash are listed in the factors shown below. The types of vehicle, direction of travel, resultant damage, etc., are entered in a different part of the overall document.  Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

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Should the USA Adopt the ‘Safety Corridor’ Approach for Crash Scenes?

Eight European countries are now requiring drivers to create a “safety corridor” to allow emergency vehicles swift access to trapped and injured people at crash scenes on congested roads.  This methodology could be a life-saver here in the USA, too.

Traffic separates to leave a ten-foot ‘lane’ to allow rescue and police vehicles to reach crash scenes. Getting this to work requires the provision of good education regarding the technique, together with enforcement that significantly penalizes those who selfishly try to cheat.  (Image courtesy of the ETSC)

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Deer-strike Collisions on U.S. Roads

Here we are again — the riskiest time of the year for having a collision with a deer on America’s roads — October, November and December.

Not something anyone likes to see, but naturally even worse if it was your car that now bears the damage as well.  (Copyright image, 2012.)

Deer-strike collisions are stunningly common in the USA.  It has been estimated that there are around 1.5 million deer killed in this manner every year.

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An Excellent, Uncompromising Message about Drinking and Driving

In the 1960s, as a boy still at home with my parents, I started to see early road safety messages on British television, and key among these were film clips about not drinking alcohol and then driving.

The following decade, I joined the police — first in a three-year cadetship in which college played a major role, then as an officer.  And during those early police years, I started to more fully understand the tragic devastation caused by people who drink alcohol before driving.

 The video above is from 1978, my second year on Traffic Patrol

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The Latest Crash and Casualty Figures for the USA

Because of the complexity of the subject, the finalized crash and casualty statistics for 2017 have just been released by NHTSA.

An overhead sign on the approach to a crash scene.  (Copyright image, 2019.)

In that year, in the USA, there were an estimated 6,452,000 police-reported traffic crashes, in which 37,133 people were killed and approximately 2,746,000 people were injured.

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