Each year, the Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety release a roadmap of state highway safety laws. The purpose is to provide information on which states have made positive strides in improving road conditions for motorists. The goal is also to identify areas where states could improve their laws and regulations in order to prevent auto accidents and make motorists safer.
The 2015 report is out and the news is mixed for people in Roanoke, Rocky Mount and surrounding areas in Franklin County, VA. The state of Virginia received a yellow rating, which means that there are plenty of areas where the state has room to improve its driver safety laws. A personal injury lawyer knows that road safety rules are essential to protecting people and preventing collisions. Virginia should embrace the opportunity to move forward with improving its safety laws this upcoming year.
Areas Where Virginia Could Improve
There are three different rankings assigned by the Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety. These include green, red and yellow. There are just 10 states that have received a green rating. Green means the state has made "significant advancements" towards the adoption of laws designed to optimize safety. A total of 31 states have a yellow rating. Yellow means the state has shown "moderately positive" performance in enacting important highway safety laws. Finally, there are nine states that have been given a "red" rating, which means that there is a "dangerous lack" of basic rules designed to reduce collision risks and protect motorists from harm.
Virginia received a yellow rating because it has passed eight out of 15 of the driving safety rules recommended by the Advocates for Highway & Auto Safety. The rules that the state of Virginia is lacking that the Advocates believe the state should pass to improve road conditions include:
- A front and rear primary enforcement seat belt law, which would make it possible for law enforcement officers to pull over a driver just because the driver or any passengers in the car did not have a seat belt on. Currently, people can be cited over for seat belt violations only if there is another traffic problem that causes the law enforcement officer to pull the driver over.
- A graduated driver's licensing rule mandating that teens need to be 16 before getting a permit. Graduated licensing slowly eases young people into operating a vehicle so they have time to learn and practice.
- A graduated driver's licensing rule imposing nighttime restrictions on teen drivers and imposing limitations on how many passengers a teen with a new license can have in the car with him.
- A comprehensive law imposing broad restrictions preventing people from driving while talking on a cell phone.
- An open container law prohibiting open containers of alcohol in vehicles.
Over the course of 2013, there were 740 people in car crashes in the state of Virginia. Perhaps if there were stricter laws that did a better job at preventing dangerous behavior, there would be fewer people killed in preventable crashes.
If you have been harmed, contact Davis, Davis, Davis & Davis, PC today at 866-434-1581 or visit https://www.davislawfirm.com to schedule a consultation. Serving Roanoke, Rocky Mount and surrounding areas in Franklin County, VA.