RALEIGH – Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson announced a new initiative yesterday championed by Governor Pat McCrory to eliminate deaths on North Carolina’s roadways. NC Vision Zero seeks to bring together multiple agencies and stakeholders to engineer safer roads, educate all road users, and enforce life-saving traffic laws.
“My top priority as governor is to ensure the safety of everyone traveling throughout North Carolina,” said Governor McCrory. “One life lost to a traffic accident is one too many. I believe we can work together to make our roads safer for everyone.”
The immediate goal of NC Vision Zero is to cut roadway fatalities and serious injuries in half in the next 15 years, with a long term target of zero deaths on North Carolina roadways.
“This is an ambitious goal, but it is not beyond our reach,” said Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson. “Over the past ten years, we have achieved 148 zero fatality days, including several consecutive days.”
In 2015, 1,387 people were killed on North Carolina roads. If the current trend of yearly fatalities continues for the next five years, more than 6,300 lives are at stake.
The NC Vision Zero initiative utilizes data analytics to guide traffic safety efforts and educate the public. Safety stakeholders, such as the North Carolina State Highway Patrol, are able to use the data to directly link agency enforcement and countermeasure activities with crash reduction goals set forth in Governor McCrory’s Highway Safety Plan.
“North Carolinians can make a difference by following the speed limit, wearing a seat belt, and not driving while impaired or distracted,” said Don Nail, director of the Governor’s Highway Safety Program. “We have to hold not only ourselves, but others, accountable for risky driving habits. This will help prevent crashes and save lives.”
Five E’s of NC Vision Zero
Education to prepare North Carolina drivers through lifelong learning, starting with drivers education programs and continuing through public outreach, including efforts such as Click It or Ticket, Booze It & Lose It, and One Text or Call Could Wreck it All.
Enforcement of traffic laws to prevent risky behaviors, such as speeding and impaired driving, through high-visibility efforts by the NC State Highway Patrol and local law enforcement.
Engineering vehicles and roadways to prevent crashes and forgive human mistakes.
Emergency response to reduce the severity of injuries from a crash through rapid response and treatment.
Everyone shares the responsibility of keeping North Carolina roads safe. By following traffic laws, making safe decisions on the road, and advocating for others to do the same, we collectively support a culture which prioritizes safety.