The Safety Report discusses transportation safety and what actions should be taken to prevent increased accident rates.
- Fewer people wearing seatbelts because roads are emptier
- People going at increased speeds because of emptier roads
- Driving impaired or distracted
- “The 2021 Roadmap of State Highway Safety Laws from Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety (Advocates) outlines clear, confirmed and consistently proven countermeasures.”
- 36,000 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes – leading cause of death for people in U.S.
- 7 million police-reported crashes
- 2.7 million people were injured
- 10,142 deaths from crashes involving a drunk driver
- In crashes involving a distracted driver, 3,142 people were killed— a 10% increase from 2018
Changes Needed in 2021 to Impact Accident Rates
State laws have a direct impact on safety behavior. The statistics demonstrate a lack of or missing proper laws. The Safety Report has determined that an additional 390 laws need to be signed across ALL states and Washington DC to meet the Advocates’ recommendations.
In 2021, the Advocates hope that by outlining specific federal laws that should take place and implementing specific solutions on a state level, the safety rating and crash statistics should improve drastically.
Advanced Vehicle Safety Technology
The Safety Report has determined that advanced technology that has helped avoid or lessen crashes be standard production rather than an add-on to a vehicle. Automatic emergency braking (AEB), lane departure warning, (LDW), and blind-spot detection (BSD) have all made a dramatic impact on crash rates. AEB has reduced accidents by 56%, LDW by as much as 20%, and BSD has reduced injury crashes by 25%. AEB and forward collision warning has also prevented large truck accidents by 44% and 41%, respectively. Headlights are also in dire need of improvement as nighttime visibility is a safety concern.
Automated Enforcement and Autonomous Vehicles
The Report has also determined that automated enforcements such as red-light and speed cameras are effective against running red lights and speeding. Controlling speeding has proven to be difficult but automated enforcement has reduced fatal red-light crash rates by as much as 21% and fatal crash rates at intersections by 14%. Over the last 25 years, increased speed limits have killed 37,000 people.
Autonomous vehicles (AV) have the opportunity to drastically reduce life-altering crashes, deaths, and injuries, but they must meet minimum performance requirements and several oversights. Advocates have recommended federal action, regulations, and safeguards to protect the general public. At this time, there is understandably some concern with automated vehicles. There have been multiple crashes that involved cars equipped with autonomous technology and there are laws that need to be implemented to make sure the driver and passengers are safe. A few recommendations mentioned in the report include proper restraints of the occupants in the event of a crash and that if the driver takes over the wheel while the car is driving automatically, it must have certain measures in place.
There are many other changes The Safety Report mentions. Each problem has killed thousands of people and with the recommendations of the safety report, it is hoped that these preventative measures will reduce injuries and fatalities.
Changes the safety report mentions are
- Impaired Driving—Technology has the ability to prevent and detect impaired driving and should be required in all vehicles. This could prevent 9,000 deaths each year.
- Large Truck Safety—Trucks have killed as many as 5,000 people which is a 48% increase compared to 2009. 159,000 were injured in 2019 and injuries sustained by truck drivers have increased by 18%. AEB and speed limiting devices would serve well to prevent many of these deaths. The Department of Transportation has ignored several other safety advances such as basic driver training and screening for sleep apnea. Meanwhile, many of these technologies are already implemented in the European Union.
- Pedestrian and Bicyclist Safety – Pedestrians and Bicyclist fatalities have reached their highest peaks in the last 30 years. There are several advancements the National Transportation Safety Board wishes to make – most of which are common sense advancements to protect vulnerable people. These include safety standards for vehicles in the hood and the bumper to reduce impact severity and vehicle avoidance systems. Other changes are road safety infrastructure to protect bike lanes and pedestrians alike.
- Rear Seat Safety – In 2012, Congress passed a law directing the Department of Transportation (DOT) to require rear seat belt reminders in all vehicles by 2015, but in 2021, it still has not been done. Many rear seat deaths are caused by a lack of a seatbelt. Infants and children are also left alone in the backseat far too often. The safety report states that “detection and alert systems are available and affordable that can indicate when a child is left unattended”. These can prevent children from dying of hypothermia or severe heat.
Nevada Transportation Laws
Currently, Nevada is in the red zone based on the number of safety laws Nevada has passed in 2020/2021. This indicates that the state is dangerously behind in adopting the recommended safety laws to prevent death and injuries. In 2019 alone, there have been 304 deaths as a result of a motor vehicle crash and a total of 2,910 fatalities over the last 10 years. If Nevada wishes to be in the green and prevent further deaths, there are specific laws needed. Most of these involve Graduated Driver Licensing and stronger child protection laws. They need a minimum age requirement, stronger supervised driving requirements, nighttime restrictions, passenger restrictions, and higher cell phone restrictions. Nevada also needs a booster seat law, rear-facing through age 2 law, and a seatbelt enforcement law for child and standard passenger protection.
To read a further detailed report on the safety laws required, read the full 2021 Roadmap of State Highway Safety Laws written by the Advocates of Highway and Auto Safety.
Dimopoulos Injury Law works hard to update the public on potential changes to Nevada law. We want everyone on the road to be as safe as possible. If you’re involved in an accident, contact us to receive a free consultation. Our experienced team of accident lawyers will work with you to ensure you receive maximum compensation for your injuries.