Many new cars that are for sale in the Boston area come with a suite of safety features that were not available even a few years ago. One feature that has become standard on about 50 percent of new vehicles is the backup camera. These cameras allow drivers to have a view of the blind spot just behind their vehicles to prevent backup collisions. Backup collisions often result in serious if not fatal injuries, and because of this many lawmakers and consumers think that backup cameras should be required in all vehicles.
By today, most American school children will have returned to their classrooms after a long summer vacation. As kids make this transition and reestablish their rhythms, motorists, pedestrians and cyclists alike will be in greater danger for a few weeks than they were before Back to School season began. There is a greater risk of car accidents involving pedestrians and cyclists this time of year because so many children are crowding the sidewalks and they may have forgotten critical safety information like, "Do not run into the road without looking both ways."
In May, we wrote about the fact that the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has embraced the idea of dashboard technology aimed at fostering drivers' ability to communicate hands-free while on the road. The NHTSA hopes that encouraging auto manufacturers to install such hands-free communication technology will lead to a reduction in distracted driving accidents nationwide.
Independence Day weekend is traditionally among the most dangerous for American travelers, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). In 2011 alone, more than 250 motorists and passengers perished on the nation's highways and surface streets, while thousands more were injured. The vast majority of car accidents are preventable. Therefore, it is critical that motorists observe a few key safety tips in order to better ensure that this Independence Day weekend yields far fewer tragedies than past holiday weekends have.
Driving behavior is a matter of personal responsibility. When motorists start their engines and drive off down the road, they assume responsibility for their own safety and the safety of those around them. When drivers fail to take this matter of personal responsibility seriously, car accidents may occur. Thankfully, most drivers are responsible, respectful and they value the safety of everyone on the road. However, reckless, negligent and careless drivers also populate America's highways and surface streets. And no matter how responsible drivers are, everyone can slip from time to time.
Ensuring that the nation's highways and surface streets are safe for travelers of all kinds is challenging primarily because there are so many factors in play at any given time. For example, the responsibility for preventing trucking accidents rests on the truckers themselves, nearby motorists, those who maintain the roads, those who create safety guidelines for truckers and fleet managers themselves. Even when all these players are doing their utmost to promote safety, accidents can still occur.
Last month, the Obama Administration approved a proposal penned by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that would mandate installation of Event Data Recorders (EDRs) in all new passenger vehicle models beginning September of 2014. EDRs, also known as black boxes, promise to both prevent car accidents and shed light on those that occur. However, many are concerned about the privacy implications of having a box temporarily record their car's every move.
As any motorist can tell you, taking a wrong turn is easy to do, but in the case of a recent incident in Coolidge Corner, the explanation offered by the woman for why her car ended up on the MBTA Green Line rail tracks was surprising to say the least - her GPS told her to drive down the tracks.
Young Boston drivers should know that using cell phones while driving is risky. Two new studies shed light on cellphone use by young drivers.
Massachusetts highway workers have a hazardous job. They perform maintenance, inspections and construction, often just a few feet from traffic whizzing by. In work zones the Department of Transportation prioritizes the safety of its contractors and employees, as well as motorists traveling through these areas. Sadly, the DOT's precautions were not enough to save one of its inspectors, a 58-year-old engineer killed on a September night in 2010. A drunk driver hit him in a construction area on Route 9 in Framingham. The area was marked off with reflective cones and barrels while the inspector checked pavement temperatures as a quality control measure.