Godwin, Morris, Laurenzi & Bloomfield, P.C.

Police effort seeks to eliminate fatal car and truck accidents

The Homeland Security Commissioner has teamed up with the Tennessee Department of Safety and other law enforcement organizations in an effort to reduce roadway fatalities. The goal is to reduce car and truck accident fatalities by a factor of 15 percent during the coming year.

The campaign, which has been codenamed Drive to Zero Fatalities, is a nationwide effort that was begun by the International Association of Chiefs of Police. The IACP hopes to use traffic accident statistics to set specific safety goals. The program will focus on speeding, distracted driving, impaired driving and seat belt usage. It will also encourage law enforcement agencies around the country to crack down on the unsafe driving habits of semi-truck and bus drivers.

According to one law enforcement colonel, the first quarter of 2014 has proved that Tennessee is on the right track with the campaign. Indeed, from January through March 2014 there have been 192 traffic-related deaths in the state. This figure is 15 less than 2013 during the same time frame.

Ultimately, no number of traffic fatalities should be acceptable among Tennessee drivers. However, accidents inevitably happen due to dangerous roadway conditions, motor vehicle defects and/or the fault of another driver who fails to follow the law.

When an unlawful driver causes a fatal car or truck accident, family members of deceased victims may be able to pursue wrongful death claims in court against the party responsible. Successfully navigating a wrongful death action can be a way for surviving family members to gain financial compensation for their loved one's end of life and memorial expenses, as well as other expenses and losses. It can also be a valuable way for family members left behind to gain a sense of closure regarding the tragic loss of their family member.

Source: Elk Valley Times, "Campaign aimed at reducing traffic fatalities" No author given, Apr. 10, 2014

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