Highway Deaths Nationwide Fall to Lowest Level Since 1950

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Too often, blogs, attorney websites, and news stories focus on dangers, risks, and bad news. Fortunately, there has been some recent good news which is worthy of reporting. The AP recently ran a story noting that our highways appear to be safer places to drive now than at any time in the last half-century. That is wonderful news.

The reduction in auto-related deaths appears to be related to better technology in cars, enforcement of drunken driving laws, and increased awareness of the vital role seat belts play in car safety.
• Motorcycle fatalities broke a horrible string of 11 years of annual increases, falling by 16 percent, from 5,312 in 2008 to 4,462 in 2009.
• The number of people injured in motor vehicle crashes fell for the tenth consecutive year. Approximately 2.2 million people were injured in 2009, which represents a 5.5 percent decline from the 2008 figures.
• Drunken driving deaths declined 7.4 percent in 2009 to 10,839, compared with 11,711 in 2008. Also, alcohol-impaired fatalities fell in 33 states across the nation.

In Georgia, a law was recently (July 1, 2010) passed which makes it illegal to text while driving. In addition, drivers with ‘provisional’ licenses are barred from any cell phone use while driving. These are common sense measures and will, undoubtedly, make Georgia roads safer. If you are driving a vehicle, it is probably not a good idea to be looking at your blackberry or iphone. In truth, the risk of sending whatever message you might be typing is far outweighed by the dangers posed by distracted driving. Also, if you are just learning to drive, any cell phone use distracts from learning how to safely operate the vehicle you are in. Just ask Homer Simpson….

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