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Re: idea

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  • mdh6214
    Although Tallahassee has a population of roughly 200,000, we average roughly one traffic fatality every two to three months--and a pedestrian/cyclist fatality
    Message 1 of 11 , Jul 8, 2002
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      Although Tallahassee has a population of roughly 200,000, we
      average roughly one traffic fatality every two to three months--and
      a pedestrian/cyclist fatality only once a year. Especially near the
      three college campuses in town, this surprises me that they're
      not weekly occurances.

      Usually, these accidents are responded to with a brief article in
      the local newspaper explaining how the accident happened.
      Here's a pattern I've noticed:

      - If a pedestrian or cyclist was killed, either (a) s/he was drunk, or
      (b) she was out at night or in the rain without proper lighting. Of
      course, this makes it "their fault".

      - If a driver was killed, they usually were not wearing a seat belt. If
      alcohol was involved, the newspaper will mention that too.

      - If the driver was a high school student, the death will spark area
      high schools to aggressively state that you should not drive
      drunk or without a seatbelt, since most of the time, one of those
      two situations most likely caused the student to die.

      During spring break week of 2000, a few students of my former
      high school was in an SUV, no seatbelts, high-school-age drunk
      driver, racing back to their parents' house on a nearby vacation
      island. The SUV flipped, and one of them died. The school and
      family of the dead student launched a massive "Buckle up for
      Dale" campaign with bumper stickers, billboards, and the like. I
      heard reports that high school students were driving away from
      his funeral--without seat belts. Why? Because it won't happen to
      them, of course. To this say, you see vehicles with "Buckle up for
      Dale" bumper stickers with no occupants wearing seat belts.

      It is going to be extremely hard to get across the point of how
      dangerous auto use really is. Again--it'll never happen to me.
      Ever. That's what Dale said too. Plus, many Americans continue
      their perception of auto use as the safest mode of transportation,
      despite statistics.

      > Each year, one of the reporters should contact the families or
      friends
      > on those killed the _previous_ year to see if they have done
      anything
      > during the subsequent year to reduce the chance that they or
      another
      > loved one would die on the roads in the future. It is this lack of
      > followup action (and even the feeling that the world can change
      the
      > situation) that we should be exposing.
      >
      > Chris Bradshaw
      > Ottawa
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