Our Fayetteville car accident lawyers can attest that Georgia has a serious issue with traffic. The good news is that there’s a project in the works to help reduce them. Vision Zero is a new city initiative that could bring in huge cultural changes as well as major shifts in traffic. The idea of vision zero is pretty straightforward. Use a bureaucratic system to change and modify traffic regulations, and Atlanta is bringing it in as a priority following the release of stay-at-home orders. The idea is that Atlanta will act almost as a test site so that fellow cities can follow later.
At this point in time, there are a few other U.S. cities participating or utilizing Vision Zero policies. So how much change should you expect, and is it worth getting excited over? Imagine a city with zero traffic fatalities. It’s a dream, but is it a pipe dream?
What Is Vision Zero?
The start of Vision Zero goes as far back as the late 1990s. This initiative or course of action started in Sweden and has had proven success throughout Europe. Vision Zero began as the recognition of the scale of vehicular related deaths became clear. About the population of a small town of people die each year because of traffic accidents.
Those deaths include pedestrian, biking, and motorcycle accidents, as well as vehicle-to-vehicle accidents. So what can you be done? That’s where Vision Zero comes into play. The initiative isn’t just about making the roads safer. It’s about reducing the impact of driver mistakes.
Without a doubt, when you have a large number of people driving vehicles of varying sizes, with varying power, there will be accidents. Then you have the individuals who drive aggressively or can’t manage to follow basic traffic rules. As long as we’re all driving cars, there will be car accidents. Vision Zero isn’t about stopping accidents. It’s about making them survivable.
How Does It Reduce Traffic Fatalities?
The initial data from New York City after they implemented some Vision Zero measures was that fatalities dropped by 34%. So why hasn’t the city stuck with it? Unlike the cities in Europe that can brag about one fatality per year because of Vision Zero initiatives, U.S. cities don’t seem to have the dedication.
It’s possible that the lives of people in Atlanta and throughout Georgia will only feel an impact over the first few years. To that extent, it is all about how committed the local governments are to keeping these initiatives. But even after a small spike in traffic fatalities in NYC in 2014-2015, the number continues to decline although Vision Zero measures are largely forgotten. How?
The most functional way that Vision Zero reduces fatalities is through city design. Using pedestrian islands in crossing areas, putting crosswalks in places convenient for pedestrians rather than drivers and similar. These approaches put the most vulnerable for a traffic fatality in the safest position possible. However, there are ways that they protect drivers too. Segmenting and separating a bus lane, and changing the light change system can drastically eliminate the chance of severe crashes.
Give Support and Learn to Roll with the Changes
Will Vision Zero come to Fayetteville? The Georgia Department of Transportation already has a bit of a start on this possibility. Back in 2015, a few major changes prioritizing pedestrian safety came from the state. Then again, the Pedestrian Safety Action Plan came down from the Georgia Department of Transportation in 2018.
Essentially, it’s reasonable to expect all of Georgia to implement Vision Zero policies even if it seems confined to Atlanta for now. Keep in mind that these changes should be beneficial to everyone, although the street construction and reduced speed limits are frustrating. If everyone is on board and you can support changes to reduce traffic fatalities, then we should all see positive changes in the upcoming years.
Contact Your Wade Law Georgia Car Accident Lawyer After a Wreck
Wade Law of Fayetteville is the local law office that offers assistance and legal counsel to car crash victims. Not only will you still need help even in a Vision Zero world, but we should expect more injuries. Because Vision Zero would ideally create a drastic reduction in traffic fatalities, we should all expect that each of those avoided deaths would result in some type of injury.
After taking on a car accident injury, you’ll need to know how to manage the insurance resolution process. The steps you take early on, such as filing your claim and giving a statement, could determine how much compensation you receive. It’s possible that you need more than what your policy provider is willing to provide. Call our Fayetteville car accident firm to negotiate for a fair or reasonable settlement.