Last year Washington drivers crashed their vehicles less than at any time in the past decade. Airbags and seat belts can reduce fatalities, but drivers themselves get credit for cutting down on collisions.
” … A reduction in collisions means there has been a marked improvement in driver behavior,” said Darrin Grondel, director of the Washington Traffic Safety Commission., which co-authored a press release with the Washington State Patrol and Washington Department of Transportation.
There were fewer than 99,000 collisions in 2011, down from a peak of 123,000 in 2005. The state’s Target Zero program, traffic safety experts focused on finding out what causes collisions and how to prevent them, has a goal of zero traffic deaths and serious injures.
Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond said highway safety features such as rumble strips and cable guardrail prevent collisions, reduce injuries and save lives.
Collisions are down across the board. Injury decisions down about 20 percent from a peak in 2005, DUI-related collisions down about 21 percent, and fatal collisions down by about 30 percent, also from ’05.
State Patrol Chief John Batiste says there are no such things as accidents in traffic. Everybody has the power to reduce them by making better choices. The three most important choices, he said, are slowing down, paying attention to the road and driving sober.