Every day, people rely on roads and highways to get them where they need to go. They are an essential part of our lives, connecting us to loved ones, our jobs, and the places we enjoy. Unfortunately, accidents do happen—and often, they could have been prevented. From drunk driving and distracted driving to speeding and poor road conditions, there are several ways drivers can end up in an accident.
But there are also a number of ways you can help make your community safer. Raising awareness and advocating for change can help prevent accidents and save lives. Here’s how:
1. Educate Yourself and Others About Safe Driving Habits
When it comes to staying safe on the roads, knowledge is power. The more you know about good driving habits, the better equipped you’ll be to keep yourself—and your community—safe. Share what you’ve learned with friends and family members, and encourage them to do the same.
You can also get involved with local organizations that promote safe driving habits—or start your own campaign. Just a few hours of your time can make a big difference. So get out there and spread the word!
2. Advocate for Improved Road Conditions
Potholes, loose gravel, sharp curves—poor road conditions are leading causes of accidents. If you notice hazardous conditions on the road, you frequently travel, reach out to your local representatives and let them know. The more people who speak up, the more likely it is that something will be done about it. Here are a few other ways to advocate for improved road conditions:
- Join or start a community watch group that focuses on keeping roads safe and clean.
- Work with your neighbors to beautify the area around busy highways and intersections—tidy landscaping can help improve visibility and make roads safer.
- Urge your representatives to support measures that would improve road conditions in your community.
3. Stay Alert and Report Dangerous Drivers
If you see a driver behaving recklessly, don’t hesitate to report them. This includes everything from speeding and tailgating to texting while driving and running red lights. You can report dangerous drivers in many states by calling *77 on your cell phone.
You should also avoid driving while distracted. Put your phone away, and make sure you’re well rested before getting behind the wheel. If you see a driver who appears to be fatigued, don’t hesitate to report them as well.
4. Support Stricter Laws for Drunk or Distracted Drivers
Have you ever been cut off by a driver talking on their phone? Or almost hit by someone weaving in and out of their lane? These close calls can be scary—and they’re also completely preventable. If you want to see stricter laws for drunk or distracted drivers in your state or community, make your voice heard. Attend town halls or write to your representatives and let them know why these issues are important to you.
You can also support organizations that are fighting for stricter laws, like Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD) or Distracted Operators Risk Casualties (DORC). These groups are working hard to keep our roads safe, and they need all the support they can get.
5. Help Make Your Community More Walkable or Bikeable
Did you know that making your community more walkable or bikeable can help reduce accidents? When people have the option to walk or ride their bikes, they’re less likely to drive—and that means fewer cars on the road.
You can help make your community more walkable or bikeable by doing things like:
- Organizing or taking part in a community clean-up day to clear walking and biking paths
- Working with your neighborhood association or local government to create or improve bike lanes
- Volunteering for or donating to organizations that advocate for pedestrians and cyclists, like PeopleForBikes
6. Be a Good Role Model
Of course, the best way to keep your community safe is to set a good example yourself. Obey all traffic laws, and always drive defensively. And if you ever find yourself in a truck accident, for example, be sure to consult with a semi-truck accident lawyer to ensure that you receive the compensation you deserve.
You can also lead by example in your everyday life. Talk to your kids about the importance of safety on the road, and set a good example for them by following the tips on this list. By being a good role model, you can help make your community a safer place for everyone.
Keeping our roads safe is a community effort—one that requires ongoing education and advocacy. By taking action and raising awareness, you can help make your community a safer place for everyone. So put down your phone, buckle up, and let’s work together to make our roads safe.