The United States is in the midst of an unspoken public fitness crisis that has been unfolding on our highways, u. S. A. Roads, and town streets for more than a century. In 2018, greater than 40,000 American lives had been misplaced on the road for the 1/3 instantly yr – but we’ve got become so numb to these numbers, only some of the worst collisions made their manner into countrywide news.
Of the ones 40,000 deaths, 10,000 have been related to drunk driving collisions – prompting a hearing inside the U.S. House of Representatives in March to speak about a way to cope with this ongoing disaster.
Typically, listening to bearing on the death of 10,000 Americans might be assured to attract a swarm of beltway influencers and newshounds – unless, of direction, the subject is site visitors safety. During the sparsely-attended listening to, legislators questioned a panel of witnesses together with Helen Witty, National President of Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) and David Kelly, former head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
Witty shared the coronary heart-wrenching tale of the way she had the circle of relatives of her desires – but that her dream became shattered upon dropping her sixteen yr-vintage daughters on June 1, 2000:
“An alcohol and marijuana-impaired youngster driver ended that dream. Helen Marie changed into skating on the motorcycle course only some blocks from domestic whilst she appeared up and saw a car headed closer to her on that bike direction,” Witty recounted.
Traffic deaths are sudden, violent, and indiscriminate. Every day, nearly 100 Americans from all walks of lifestyles – urban and rural, male and female, running class and white collar – lose their lives to collisions. The one steady is that ninety-four percent of deadly collisions are due to human blunders or desire. Driving beneath the influence, as well as dashing and not wearing a seatbelt, has long been one of the top three elements at the back of those collisions.
While there may be no silver bullet for removing all site visitors fatalities, technologies exist today which could notably lessen the number and severity of collisions. According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, as a minimum 28 states and the District of Columbia now require convicted drunk drivers to use ignition interlock gadgets, which are correctly in-vehicle breathalyzer exams so as to prevent a vehicle from starting if the driver’s blood alcohol content material exceeds a predetermined threshold.
During the hearing, Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) emphasized the need for federal action on stopping inebriated driving and endorsed her colleagues to support her invoice, the Abbas Drunk Driving Act (H.R. 514), which might instruct NHTSA to establish a popular requiring all motor automobiles to be equipped with an ignition interlock device. The invoice is known as after the five individuals of a Michigan family who were killed by way of an incorrect-way driving force even as getting back from a holiday in Florida earlier this year.