Do automakers have any responsibility for promoting safe driving? We think that the majority of people would agree that they do, yet for countless years there have been television commercials from automakers showing bad driving — particularly those which glorify speed, or dodging and weaving through traffic — which at the very least, quite deliberately contradict safety values and driver courtesy in the hope of generating more car sales. Some of it, however, seems to be sheer thoughtlessness or even ignorance and the images below would appear to be an example of this.
August 22, 2018
In 2007, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety published an excellent book which since then has been one of our key “go to” resources for valuable guidelines. Its title was: Improving Traffic Safety Culture in the United States — The Journey Forward [See footnote for a relevant excerpt].
There can be no doubt that geographical, political, socio-economic and — importantly — workplace aspects of culture have a major influence on road safety, and this can be seen not only from one country to another but often from region to region within a country.
Equally, there can be no doubt that traffic safety interventions which fail to consider and adapt to relevant aspects of local cultures are commonly doomed to failure.
Thoughtless, illegal and dangerous….
This photograph was submitted to us this morning (together with permission to use it), from New York State, and it shows a pick-up that has stopped in a very bad position at a red light.
We all need to remember that apart from it being illegal to stop *after* the Stop line, it can cause particular danger if the crosswalk is obstructed as a result, as is the case here.
If a pedestrian needs to cross and walks behind the pick-up truck, they will be hidden from the view of any driver that is turning in to this leg of the intersection, and the potential disaster becomes obvious.
Always stop before crossing the Stop line!
Here we go once more — another half-a-million vehicles recalled in the USA because yet again the ‘P’ (Park) setting in automatic gearboxes is failing, and those vehicles that haven’t had the parking brake properly set inevitably will then roll away down any hills or even the gentlest of slopes they happen to be on, and then they build up momentum. This frequently just results in damage but all too often it maims or kills people…. especially children playing on driveways or in nearby yards!
Vehicles can even cause harm if left on totally flat ground without a parking brake in use, if they are hit by another vehicle. Think of billiard balls. Your car’s “P” setting will be smashed by any hard impact and your car will careen away until it runs out of momentum or it hits something or somebody.
The humble parking brake is one of the most misunderstood and most abused safety controls found in modern vehicles, and this failure to understand and the resultant failure to actually use parking brakes leads to many pointless and preventable crashes, some of which cost lives.
Do not drive on the shoulder! It’s a state law in many states but we have yet to encounter any Federal agency or state government in America that actually teaches this subject well… meaning for best safety!