In the last couple of years, the number of fatal traffic accidents in Arizona has risen by 36%, resulting in someone being killed every nine hours on the roads. A recent report notes that Arizona currently implements less than a third of recommended road safety laws that could help to protect road users and deter dangerous driving. When combined with a lack of funding for adequate road maintenance, this leads to traffic accidents and road fatalities that could be prevented.
Dealing With The Consequences Of Road Accidents
Despite recent quarantine restrictions, many states saw a surprising rise in the number of accidents on the road in March. However, in Arizona, there was a drop of 4% in road fatalities. Building on this welcome reduction should be a priority, especially as Arizona has been highlighted in recent years as one of the worst states for driver and pedestrian fatalities. Fatal incidents on the road cause significant economic and societal impacts, and, even when minor, car accidents cause stress and confusion for those involved. As well as promptly informing police and insurance providers after an incident, hiring an accident lawyer can alleviate the stress of an accident for drivers, and ensure a fair outcome, even when they are not at fault. However, in the long-term, drastically reducing the number of accidents across the state should be the ultimate goal.
Preventing Accidents With Tighter Driving Laws
One of the most common causes of road accidents across the country is distracted driving. This may take the form of physical actions such as drinking and eating behind the wheel or visual distractions where a driver takes their eyes off the road as they check a SatNav or adjust an infotainment system. An increasingly common distraction that also involves cognitive diversion is using a cell phone. To address this issue, Arizona introduced a ban on texting while driving last year, and drivers may now receive a warning from police for this offence. However, they won’t be ticketed until the law takes effect in January next year, when a first offence could result in a fine of up to $149. Arizona is also a no-tolerance state for DUI offences, which means drivers can be arrested even with a blood-alcohol content of less than the 0.08% legal limit.
Future Plans For Improving Road Safety
However, despite these legal restrictions, a recent report published by Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety rates Arizona poorly for the number of recommended safety requirements that it implements. Moving forward, campaigns such as ABC15’s Operation Safe Roads are committed to taking action to improve road safety. Simple moves such as introducing stricter seat belt requirements could lessen the devastating effects of often preventable car accidents. In addition, poor road conditions are a contributing factor in many crashes, and officials are pressing for an increase in revenue to improve overall maintenance.
Despite the introduction of a texting ban in Arizona last year, campaigners would like to see greater implementation of road safety recommendations. When combined with increased funding for road maintenance, the state could start to see a fall in the number of road accidents and fatalities.