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T&DI Launches the 17th Annual Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

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October 10, 2017, is the 17th annual Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day (PBFD).  To reduce fatalities, the campaign is asking everyone to focus on this year's theme - "Do not drive distracted; drive to arrive" - as well as their own behavior when using America's roadways as pedestrians, bicyclists, motorcycle riders, motor vehicle drivers, and passengers.  Every person should take an extra measure of care to ensure their safety and the safety of others by sharing our roadways in a safe manner.

According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), in 2016, traffic deaths rose 5.6 percent with 37,461 deaths, resulting in the NHTSA calling the largest two-year, back-to-back jump in fatalities in about 20 years. Fatalities connected to distracted and drowsy driving fell, but those connected to drunk driving, speeding and failure to use seatbelts increased. Pedestrian, motorcyclist and bicyclist fatalities all rose as well. More than 23,700 people died in passenger cars and light-duty trucks, the largest number since 2008. Traffic fatalities surged 8.4 percent in 2015, the biggest percentage increase in decades. This data makes it very clear - we all need to do more to prevent fatalities on our roadways.

The Transportation & Development Institute of ASCE asks that everybody share this information with their peers, and commit to ending roadway fatalities.

Larry Emig, P.E., now retired from the Kansas Department of Transportation, conceived the idea for PBFD. The program was kicked-off in 2001, patterned after the Great American Smokeout, when statistics showed that from 1995 through 2000 over 250,000 fatalities had occurred on our highways and streets. In the fall of 2006, the Transportation & Development Institute (T&DI) of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) assumed stewardship of the program from the National Society of Professional Engineers.

For information on starting a local event for Put the Brakes on Fatalities Day in the future, please view the PBFD resources page.