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Tag Archive | "Toward Zero Deaths"

MDOT video reminds drivers of their role in reducing fatalities


Driver behavior is a contributing factor in at least 90 percent of all fatal traffic crashes and the Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) is reminding motorists of the critical role they play in traffic safety.

A new video released on the department’s YouTube channel promoting the Toward Zero Deaths (TZD) campaign highlights what MDOT is doing to reduce highway fatalities and encourages drivers to do their part to help reach the goal of zero traffic fatalities. Watch the video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=odKDsbjKWps.

“We have a lot of new safety features being built into our cars and technology is providing new engineering tools to improve safety on our roadways,” said MDOT Traffic and Safety Engineer Mark Bott. “But the most important safety feature in any vehicle is still the driver.”

The TZD campaign was born at a national strategic highway safety workshop in 2009. Since then, many states have adopted the safety campaign that brings together stakeholders and transportation partners to improve safety through education, engineering, enforcement and emergency response.

“With driver behavior factoring into about 90 percent of all fatal crashes, one key to changing driver behavior is educating the public on the scope of the issue,” Bott added. “The 1,064 people who died on our roadways last year is a larger group than the entire population of towns like Lake Linden, North Branch, Concord, or Lakeview. This is a serious public safety issue that not enough people are aware of.”

For more information on how you can help reduce traffic fatalities visit the Michigan TZD website. Go to Michigan.gov/mdot and then click on roads and travel, then safety, then Toward Zero Deaths. You can also visit the national site at www.towardzerodeaths.org.

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Cable median barriers: A cost-effective means to save lives


 

From Michigan Department of Transportation

CAR-Fatal-crashes-TZD-bannerMedian-crossover crashes are among the most hazardous events that can occur on freeways, often leading to serious injury or death. In recent years, high-tension cable median barriers have emerged as a cost-effective alternative to conventional barriers in preventing such crashes. The Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) began installing them on state freeways in 2008. A recently completed research project confirmed that cable median barriers are effective at reducing crossover crashes and improving freeway safety in Michigan, produced guidelines to help identify the best locations to install them, and developed content for public outreach materials explaining their benefit.

After the barriers were installed, crossover crash rates on those highway segments fell by 87 percent, and the barriers successfully contained 97 percent of the vehicles that hit them. Cable barriers have improved overall safety at the locations where they have been installed. The most serious crash types—fatal and severe injury crashes—decreased by 33 percent after cable median barriers were installed, according to rigorous statistical analysis. Since their installation, cable barriers are estimated to have saved 20 lives and prevented over 100 serious injuries in Michigan.

The research study confirms that cable median barriers are a cost-effective treatment for reducing crossover crashes, fatalities and serious injuries in Michigan. The guidelines developed will give MDOT a framework for determining where cable barriers are likely to have the greatest positive impact and return on investment based on crash data and site characteristics specific to Michigan. MDOT is reviewing these recommendations for possible incorporation into future updates to the department’s median treatment design guidelines.

To help educate drivers about the safety benefits of cable median barriers, the researchers also developed content for public outreach messaging, including an update to MDOT’s 2011 brochure on cable median barriers. For a copy f the new brochure go to http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mdot/MDOT_GuardrailSystemBrochure_300385_7.pdf

For more information on the research go to the MDOT Research Spotlight at: http://www.michigan.gov/documents/mdot/RC1612_Spotlight_479486_7.pdf

The statewide goal is to reduce traffic fatalities and serious injuries on all roadways from 889 and 5,706 respectively in 2011, to 750 and 4,800 in 2016. The mission is Toward Zero Deaths on Michigan Roadways. Visit www.michigan.gov/zerodeaths for more informaiton.

 

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