Ministry of Transportation aims to reduce road fatalities through infrastructure funding

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Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Thursday outlined the Department of Transportation’s new strategy to tackle rising road fatalities in the United States. File photo by Oliver Contreras/UPI | License picture

January 27 (UPI) — The Department of Transportation is targeting road fatalities and will use federal infrastructure funding to implement a new strategy introduced Thursday.

Transport Secretary Pete Buttigieg detailed the 42-page National Road Safety Strategywhich contains five objectives.

Nearly 95% of transport-related deaths occur on streets, roads and highways, and they are increasing, according to the report.

“The rate of road fatalities per 100 million vehicle-kilometres traveled has not improved significantly over the past 10 years and has increased significantly in 2020,” the report said.

An estimated 38,680 people died on US roads in 2020, the report points out. More than 350,000 people have died from road transport incidents between 2011 and 2020.

The strategy aims to achieve zero road fatalities and adopts the principles that death and serious injury are unacceptable, humans make mistakes and safety is proactive, among others.

“People will inevitably make mistakes and make decisions that can lead to or contribute to accidents, but the transportation system can be designed and operated to accommodate certain types and levels of human error, and avoid death and injuries. serious injury in the event of an accident,” the report said. .

Under the strategy, “the ministry will focus on advancing infrastructure design and interventions that will significantly improve road safety,” according to the report, which also points out that a one-size-fits-all approach to design and construction roads does not work.

The money will come from the bipartisan infrastructure bill.

The department will work with states and local road owners to build and maintain safer roads. These initiatives include updates to the Uniform Traffic Control Devices Manual; a Complete Streets initiative to provide technical assistance to communities of all sizes; and setting the speed limit.

“We cannot tolerate the ongoing crisis of road deaths in America. These deaths are preventable, and that is why we are launching the National Road Safety Strategy today – a bold and comprehensive plan, with significant new funding of President Biden’s bipartisan Infrastructure Act We will work with all levels of government and industry to achieve results because every driver, passenger and pedestrian must be confident that they will arrive at their destination safely, at every time “, Buttigieg said in a statement.

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