Every year, millions of people are injured or killed in vehicular accidents. In the United States alone, 13 car accidents occur every minute, resulting in nearly three million injuries and over 40,000 deaths. The economic cost of these accidents is also staggering, with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimating that they cost the economy over $836 billion yearly. With so much at stake, the U.S. government must take action to reduce the number of vehicular accidents that occur each year. Here are five ways they can do just that.
One way the government can reduce the number of vehicular accidents is by improving infrastructure. This could include repairing and repaving roads, constructing new and improved highways, and building dedicated bike lanes and pedestrian walkways. In addition, by making it easier and safer for people to get around without using a car, the government can help reduce the number of accidents yearly.
Enhance Driver Education Programs
Another way to help reduce the number of vehicular accidents is by enhancing driver education programs. Here are three ways the government can improve driver education in the country.
The earlier a person starts driving, the faster they can learn the road rules. However, this kind of learning must be guided. Those 14 to 17 years old can take a learner’s permit exam. This course covers the basics of driving and teaches young drivers to be responsible on the road. It also covers the basics regarding defensive driving and sets the learner up for a driver’s license in the future.
Mandatory Continuing Education
Those who have been driving for years must continue to educate themselves on safe driving practices. The government can mandate continuing education classes for all licensed drivers, ensuring they are up-to-date on the latest driving information and technology.
Seminars and Workshops
In addition to mandatory continuing education, the government can provide seminars and workshops for drivers on various driving-related topics, such as distracted driving, safe driving in inclement weather, and sharing the road with bicyclists and pedestrians.
Increase Funding for Public Transit
Another way to reduce the number of vehicular accidents is by increasing funding for public transit. The current budget for public transport is around $18 billion, but that’s not enough. An increased budget would make it more affordable for people to use buses, trains, and other public transportation, taking cars off the road and helping reduce congestion. It would also make it easier for people who can’t afford a car or don’t want to drive to get around, which would help reduce the number of yearly accidents.
Enact Stricter Vehicle Safety Standards
The government can also help reduce the number of vehicular accidents by enacting stricter vehicle safety standards. Here are three ways that the government can pass better safety standards.
New technologies can now help make vehicles safer, such as automatic emergency braking and lane departure warning systems. As a result, the government can require that all new cars have these technologies, reducing the likelihood of accidents.
In addition to requiring newer safety technologies in vehicles, the government can also mandate that manufacturers promptly recall any vehicles with known safety defects or issues. This would help ensure that cars on the road are safe and not at risk of causing accidents.
Regular Vehicle Inspections
The government can also require regular vehicle inspections, ensuring that all cars on the road are in good working condition and not at risk of causing accidents. These inspections can be done annually or every few years, depending on the state.
Increase penalties for reckless driving
Finally, one of the best ways to discourage people from driving recklessly and causing accidents is by increasing penalties for reckless driving offenses. Here are three ways to increase penalties for the thousands of reckless drivers on the road.
The government can increase the fines for reckless driving offenses, giving individuals a strong financial incentive to drive safely.
Those guilty of reckless driving can be required to attend mandatory classes on safe driving practices and the consequences of irresponsible driving on the road.
License Suspension or Revocation
In addition to higher fines and mandatory classes, the government can also suspend or revoke the license of those found guilty of reckless driving. This would prevent them from causing accidents while their license is suspended or revoked.
Reducing the number of vehicular accidents is an important goal for any government because of the human and economic costs of these accidents. However, there are many ways the U.S. government can help reduce the number of vehicular accidents that occur yearly. The government can help make our roads safer for everyone by taking action on these fronts.