Motor vehicles have never had the amount of safety equipment in them that they do today. Despite airbags, anti-collision warning systems and improved construction, people continue to lose their lives in accidents at an alarming rate. Preliminary data indicates a 1 percent decrease in driving-related deaths in 2017, but that doesn't make up for the fact that 2016 and 2017 saw the highest death rates in nearly 50 years.
This also doesn't take into consideration the approximately 4.57 million people injured severely enough to substantiate a trip to the hospital last year. Every life saved and every injury not suffered makes a difference. That's why the National Safety Council released its recommendations to help keep drivers safe in 2018.
Reducing the dangers
In order to reduce the likelihood of collisions, the NSC recommends the following:
- You could join the NSC's "Road to Zero" initiative, which outlines what safety professionals believe will help reduce the number of fatalities.
- You could practice defensive driving, which includes avoiding drowsy or distracted driving, using your seatbelt and making alternative arrangements to get home if you drink.
- You could petition your legislators to improve traffic laws, which may improve safety on the roads.
- You could do some research regarding the dangers of drugged driving, especially now that California passed a law allowing recreational marijuana use and the prevalence of opioid abuse here and across the country.
- You could learn more about your vehicle's safety systems to make them work better for you.
- You could help instill good driving habits if you have teenagers in your home who drive.
Understanding the dangers you face and knowing how to avoid them may just save your life.
You can't always beat the odds
Even when you diligently safeguard your safety, along with the safety of your passengers and everyone else you share the roads with, other drivers may not take their duty as seriously. You may still end up suffering serious injuries in a crash due to another person's poor judgment. You could find yourself facing thousands of dollars in medical bills and lost wages, along with other damages to your personal, professional and financial lives.
The last thing you need as you recover from your injuries and attempt to get back to your life is the added stress of worrying about your financial future. You may exercise your right to file a personal injury claim against the party or parties you believe responsible for your injuries.