Save American Lives, Build Transit

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Not only does transit reduce congestion and is better for the environment, it is safer as well.  Each year automobiles cause a tremendous amount of injury to Americans.  In 2007* there were 2,491,000 Americans injured by automobiles.

The number of fatalities is staggering as well.  In 2007 41,059 Americans lost their lives on our roadways.  In that same year saw only 245 deaths on our transit systems.

Transit is also safer per mile traveled as well.  This chart shows the fatality rates for automobiles and transit:

Transit is 66% safer per mile traveled than automobiles. And because transit encourages denser settlement patterns, it will result in fewer miles traveled which further reduces accidents.

We should continue to do everything we can to improve the saftey of automobiles, cut down on drunk driving, and reduce accidents. But one way to improve our public saftey is to provide transit options that allow safer ways of getting to your destination and hopefully discourage people from driving while alcohol impaired.  Save American Lives–Build Transit.

*2007 is the most recent year that had data for all categories compared.

5 thoughts on “Save American Lives, Build Transit

    5chw4r7z said:
    February 2, 2010 at 8:55 am

    According to the cavemen one person and a couple horses died in tragic 1915 trolley accident!
    END THE MADNESS!!

    BTW, as we were traveling through C-Bus Sunday the DJ was talking about what a colossal waste of money 3C will be. Still alot of education that needs done.

    Quimbob said:
    February 2, 2010 at 10:12 am

    ^ I believe it was The Provost who made a pretty good point that radio has a vested interest in keeping people in their cars with their radios.

    5chw4r7z said:
    February 2, 2010 at 12:14 pm

    Quimbob: DAMN, true dat!

    Reality Check said:
    February 11, 2010 at 8:12 am

    You can quote all the safety stats you want. You can accurately point out the environmental benefits. You can question sprawl and so on and so forth.

    But Americans made their choice long ago, and new generations have made the same choices ever since, to embrace the automobile. A lot of people cynically think that automobiles were somehow foisted upon an unwilling public, that we were somehow tricked away from a Nirvana of efficient buses, streetcars and trains and into automobile Hell.

    That’s just not the way things worked. As soon as automobiles came along, people wanted them. They like the idea of going where they want, when they want, carrying as much as their vehicle can handle. They were glad to choose automobiles over the hassles of waiting for buses and trains in the rain, over being packed in like sardines during rush hours. over having to walk long distances to get to places that didn’t happen to be near a station.

    People can and have long coped with public transit — but only because it was necessary to do so. Owning a car in crowded cities like New York or Tokyo becomes an expensive luxury — but nearly every person who can afford that luxury chooses to have a car.

    This is where the resistence to public transit comes from — it’s people saying “Don’t make me pay taxes for a service I don’t want and have no plans to use.”

    All the streetcar cheerleading in the world isn’t going to beat that.

    zweisystem said:
    February 11, 2010 at 9:25 am

    It has been found in Europe, when a new tram (LRT/streetcar)line has been opened, the vast majority of new transit customers came from the ‘wealthier’ class of residents.

    It seems the tram offered good value for money, something buses just could not offer. It is for this very reason why LRT/trams are so popular in Europe, it works and it attracts the motorist from the car.

    One streetcar line may not achieve a lot, but a network of LRT/streetcars offering a ‘one stop’ service to major destinations will achieve the most desired modal shift from car to transit.

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