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New England saw over 18% more fatalities in 2010 than 2009  (Source: Detroit News)
Less deaths thanks to safer cars and other factors

Despite all the warnings and talk about traffic fatalities related to distracted driving and texting while driving, many continue these unsafe activities. Despite the continued ignoring of law in many states by many drivers, the death rate from traffic fatalities has declined in 2010.

What's impressive about the decline in deaths from traffic accidents in 2010 is that it happened despite the fact that more driver miles were reported in 2010. This is the fifth straight year that a reduction in fatalities on the nation's highways has been recorded. In 2010, the number of deaths in on the roads in America dropped to 32,788. That is the lowest number since 1949 according to federal regulators.

Fatalities also declined 3.2% compared to the number from 2009. The highway miles increased in 2010 to about 20.5 billion miles more than in 2009.

However, there are three areas in the U.S that saw an increase in traffic fatalities in 2010. The areas include New England and the Midwest with fatalities up 18.9% in New England and 3.9% in the Midwest. The figures are based on projections with final numbers to be released this summer.

The 2010 fatality rate is expected to be 1.09 fatalities per 100 million vehicle miles traveled; the rate was 1.13 per 100 million miles in 2009.

"Last year's drop in traffic fatalities is welcome news and it proves that we can make a difference," said U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood. "Still, too many of our friends and neighbors are killed in preventable roadway tragedies every day. We will continue doing everything possible to make cars safer, increase seat belt use, put a stop to drunk driving and distracted driving and encourage drivers to put safety first."

LaHood is one of the driving forces behind the bans on texting while driving and the push to hands free technology. However, LaHood isn't opposed to seeking bans on hands free tech as well if it is found to contribute to accidents on the nation's roads. The reduced deaths are attributed to better policing of drunk drivers and safer cars among other things.

David Strickland from the NHTSA said, "NHTSA will continue pressing forward on all of our safety initiatives to make sure our roads are as safe [as possible]."



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RE: "We don't care"
By The Raven on 4/1/2011 5:54:28 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
As much as you think policing these is stupid, the fact is people are alive today because the policing those factors saves lives, and policing them will save more lives.

Yes we know policing these things saves lives. That is why we want SOME policing. But many people think that it has gone too far (especially when mandated).

The reason we think this is stupid is because as our forefathers before us, we subscribe to the motto, "Live free or die."

If preserving your life was your aim, you'd never get on the road. You'd just stay at home.


RE: "We don't care"
By drycrust3 on 4/1/2011 7:19:53 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
"Live free or die."

I am sure that when they said "Live free" they didn't mean "Live at the expense of others" e.g. robbery, burglary, etc. Everytime there is a collision, injury, or fatality there is a cost incurred by society, just as there is when there is a murder, a robbery or a burglary.


RE: "We don't care"
By The Raven on 4/2/2011 12:40:48 AM , Rating: 2
No they did mean live free at the expense of others...and yourselves. Freedom is messy and a struggle but it is a hell of a lot better than anything else. Ask any elderly person who gets checked into a home. It is so nice to have all those people waiting on you to the extent even where you don't even have to wipe yourself. Right?

No they did mean live free at the expense of others and yourself.

Gleaning from the words of Samuel Adams...
The " animated contest of freedom" is better than "the tranquility of servitude." Where animated = chaotic, haphazard or difficult, and tranquility = simple, guaranteed or easy.
(He said it much better of course...http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/American_Independenc...

From your point of view, if you are binding yourself with laws, you are also binding others. Do you want to make that decision for them? May be they would rather risk their lives than give up the freedom that you don't care about.

Let's think of some other laws that would "definitely" be a great idea that increases meaningfulness of life and preserves said life:
a) Banning video games (clear waste of time, right?)
b) Banning candy (very little to no nutritional value, increases risk of diabetes, cavities)
c,d,f) Mandating alarm, OnStar, and Life Alert systems on your home and cars.
g) Banning 'the Bachelor'
h) Banning gangsta rap (it leads so many down the wrong path)
i) Banning free speech (do you know how many people have been killed because of free speech? It is dangerous to speak you mind sometimes.)

Of course, I am no anarchist. We make laws to minimize the chaos of freedom. But there is certainly a point where those laws do more harm than good. It seems like most people don't think we've gone far enough. But I believe these ridiculous safety and fuel efficiency laws illustrate so clearly that we have gone way too far.

The purpose of the US gov't should be a way for us to protect our freedom (from people like King George III and people like the burglars you mentioned). It's purpose is not to make sure that we live to 120 whether we want to or not, or ensure that our 401k will cover us during retirement.

I am a scientifically minded individual and I love seeing technological advances. I have personally embraced and use seatbelts, airbags, and anti-lock brakes. But I do not want to force people to use these technologies, and I certainly don't want to force people to buy implementations of them.

(And BTW, your example is inaccurate. You are assuming that people who get in accidents do it on purpose as the burglar does with his burgling?)


RE: "We don't care"
By drycrust3 on 4/2/2011 2:12:25 AM , Rating: 2
quote:
The purpose of the US gov't should be a way for us to protect our freedom ....

Since I'm not American, I'll take it you mean the purpose of every good government, and I agree with that. The problem is that just as robbers and thieves don't just steal our property, but they steal our freedom as well, so people who disregard the road rules steal our freedom to travel.
Just as we accept that incarcerating people is the lesser evil between denying a person their right to freedom or the loss of freedom they imposed on society by their actions, so telling everyone to follow the same set of rules (or face the consequences) is the lesser of the two evils between that or having drivers each follow their own sets of rules.
quote:
No they did mean live free at the expense of others and yourself.

Well, they weren't just stealing what others had earned by their own hard work, they were stealing the futures of others as well. As such, I think they have little reason to complain if society limits their freedoms and their future, even if it has just a temporal effect.


"There is a single light of science, and to brighten it anywhere is to brighten it everywhere." -- Isaac Asimov














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