Staying powers of myths

The Reno Gazette Journal reports on yet another highway safety effort. The governor wants to reduce Nevada traffic fatalities from 400 per year to 300. So the highway patrol is going to up the speed limit enforcement.

It isn’t until near the end of the report that it is noted that a lack of seat belts is involved in nearly half of the fatalities.

There is good attention given to the need to “pay attention” such as drivers who are “eating, on a cell phone or otherwise distracted.” This particular mantra is also invoked as the means to reduce pedestrian deaths.

The problem is that the traffic crash reports make it clear that the solutions being proposed are not addressing what causes the crashes. That reports that the major contributing factors of fatal crashes are “DUI, alcohol, inattentive driving, and failure to yield.” Yet the myth continues – going after ‘speeders’ with the rationalization that it will reduce traffic fatalities.

Until there is a bit more intellectual integrity in these matters it is likely that to toll on the highways will continue.

Comments are closed.