Enhancing the Traffic Safety Culture – Towards Zero Deaths

When the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety adopted “safety culture” as one of its strategic focus areas in 2007, a major short-term goal was to increase the national, state and local discourse on the subject. Three years later I am delighted with the progress we’ve made. Safety culture has been added to the agenda of numerous conferences and meetings.

Most recently, I attended the Toward Zero Death (TZD) workshop in Washington, D.C. that is part of the effort to develop the first ever National Strategic Highway Safety Plan. A Traffic Safety Culture white paper was prepared prior to the event, the topic was included in the plenary and break-out discussions, and recognized in the draft outline of the Plan. More and more individuals are recognizing the need to enhance our culture in order to achieve the kinds of long-term reductions we in the traffic safety community seek. Click here to read more about the Towards Zero Death strategy.

The continued success of our second National Summit for Rural Traffic Safety Culture brought a cross section of the transportation community together to discuss and further understand the issue, while also seeking ideas for enhancing the situation.

From the beginning, and while recognizing that “there is no silver bullet” and that this will be a long-term process, I have recognized that a key step is to get more and more individuals engaged in the movement, starting with but not limited to the traffic safety community. To that end, if you aren’t familiar with our original research compendium, “Improving Traffic Safety Culture in the United States – The Journey Forward”, I recommend you check it out. A summary and synthesis is also available for this report.

Also, in addition to using this blog to keep you informed of Foundation activities, reports and other traffic safety news, we will be inviting guest bloggers to share their perspectives. Most importantly, we hope that you will get engaged, join the journey and let us know your ideas.

Remember, one death on our nation’s roadways is unacceptable; one death every fifteen minutes is an outrage!