Safe driving campaign statistics shows common risks for accidents
In Utah and across the nation, road safety is a primary focus of legislators, regulators and law enforcement. To emphasize the importance of adhering to the rules of the road, there are periodic campaigns to enforce the law. That includes issuing citations or warnings to drivers who are behaving dangerously. It also involves removing vehicles from the road if there are safety violations. While this can reduce collisions, it is unfortunate that accidents will still happen. Recognizing common catalysts is important, but after the crash, the reason it occurred can be crucial when assessing options.
Operation Safe Driver Week highlights road dangers
In mid-July, the Commercial Vehicle Safety Alliance had Operation Safe Driver Week. Over the course of one week, the annual exercise saw law enforcement stopping vehicles to reduce risky driving. Overall, more than 46,000 vehicles were stopped – almost 18,000 passenger vehicles and more than 28,000 commercial vehicles. Although preventing speeding was the main objective, there were myriad other concerns. In total, there were more than 8,400 warnings and 12,200 citations. Commercial vehicles accounted for half the warnings and one-third of the citations. The remainder were for passenger vehicles.
Breaking down the reasons for the warnings/citations, speeding elicited nearly 1,700 citations and more than 2,500 warnings. Drivers also ignored seat belt mandates. A known problem on the nation’s roadways is distracted driving. Passenger drivers received more than 9,300 warnings and 1,355 citations. Commercial drivers were cited for ignoring traffic control devices, making improper lane changes and following too closely (tailgating).
Some stops were due to fundamental equipment violations like headlights not working correctly or not working at all. That led to commercial drivers getting more than 6,600 warnings and 4,000 citations. At around the same time in July, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) investigated truck companies that had troubling safety records. They too faced consequences for their violations including 30 receiving unsatisfactory safety ratings. Sixty-four received conditional ratings.
After an auto accident, guidance with how to proceed is key
While drivers, passengers, motorcyclists, bicyclists and pedestrians in Utah and throughout the U.S. know there are potential road dangers, this research provides direct evidence as to how prevalent problematic driver behaviors and equipment flaws are. Motor vehicle accidents can lead to major injuries, hospital stays, rehabilitation, lost time on the job, problems contributing to a family, possible fatalities and a litany of other challenges. Having experienced advice in the aftermath is a vital step.