2015-11-18 / Editorials

Vision Zero A Big Zero

Vision Zero, while well-intentioned we believe, has not worked and does not look like it will work any time soon.

According to newspaper reports, the multi-million-dollar Vision Zero program does not seem to be having a corresponding effect, as traffic fatalities are down by a mere five percent, as measured this past July, which may possibly reflect a downward trend that has been occuring over past decades anyway.

It seems to us sometimes the traffic designs are overly complicated, as if to justify the huge expense. And some ideas, such as locating bus stops at medians in the middle of multi-lane roadways just seem ludicrous.

Regardless of the efficacy of Vision Zero, we believe it is best for all of us to stand up and not let anyone we know drive under the influence, and also to model courteous and safe traffic habits for our children, such as waiting on the sidewalk for the light to change rather than standing in the road inches away from oncoming cars. And as drivers, avoid tailgating; allow pedestrians to cross the street rather than racing to turn ahead of them (only to catch a red light at the next corner); pull straight ahead when waiting to turn left, allowing traffic in back of us to go around – not turning into oncoming traffic, forcing one to plow through pedestrians who DO have the right of way when crossing; paying close attention at all times, no cellphone chatting and certainly no texting; no zipping in and out of lanes of highway traffic like a pretend race car driver – it is not worth the extra minute or two, if we are risking our lives and the lives of others; and drive defensively, expect others to make mistakes and keep an eye on them.

At the end of the day, traffic safety cannot be accomplished by legislation, it must be done by educating and working with people; not by writing tickets and passing ineffective and disruptive laws.

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