PA Road Safety Rating = “Yellow”
The prevention of motor vehicle collisions remains a top priority, with 1,208 people killed in Pennsylvania in 2013 as a result of traffic accidents. Traffic safety laws can prevent motor vehicle collisions by causing drivers to stop engaging in high risk behaviors. The Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety have a list of 15 suggested laws they believe every state should adopt in order to most effectively reduce collisions. Each year, the Advocates release a report evaluating how well states have done in terms of passing legislation that protects the public on the roads. This year’s report has been released and Pennsylvania was given a “yellow” rating.
When traffic safety laws are passed, drivers who violate those laws are presumed to have behaved negligently. This can make it easier for victims to recover compensation after a car accident since they do not have to specifically prove the other motorist was negligent. Crash victims who wish to pursue a claim for compensation should consult with a car accident lawyer. Philadelphia victims of collisions can get legal help from KaplunMarx to pursue their damage claim.
Pennsylvania Laws to Reduce Motor Vehicle Accidents
The Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety assign three different ratings levels to states based on how effective they have been in passing crash prevention legislation. A green rating means the state has made significant strides in implementing recommended public safety laws. A red rating means that the state has failed to implement many of the recommended regulations designed to reduce collisions. A yellow rating, as Pennsylvania received, means that the state has made a moderate effort to pass recommended legislation.
Pennsylvania has only implemented eight out of the 15 recommended driver safety laws. The state does not have:
- A primary enforcement seat belt law giving law enforcement officers the right to stop and cite motorists if drivers or passengers in either the front or back seat are not wearing seat belts.
- A law requiring that all motorcycle riders within the state wear helmets.
- Strong nighttime driving restrictions on new teen drivers as part of a graduated driver’s license program.
- An effective cell phone restriction on new teen drivers as part of a graduated licensing program.
- A graduated licensing program requiring teens to reach the age of 18 before getting a full and unrestricted license.
- A law that would require all drunk driving offenders to use an ignition interlock device in their vehicles if they have been convicted. An ignition interlock device prevents future intoxicated driving by requiring motorists to take a breath test before they can start the ignition of their vehicles.
Graduated licensing laws have proven to be important to reduce crash risks among new drivers as teens are the group most likely to crash, and crashes are a top cause of fatalities among young people.
While Pennsylvania lawmakers have passed some important laws to make the roads safe, there is lots of room for improvement. If any motorists do violate safety laws, victims of a resulting crash should consult with a car accident lawyer. Philadelphia personal injury law firm KaplunMarx is here to help.