The Department of Transportation announced Oct. 5 a new initiative targeting an ambitious highway safety goal by the year 2046: Zero fatalities from on-road crashes.
The U.S. DOT and three of its sub-agencies — including trucking industry regulator Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration — said the Road to Zero project will give $1 million a year for the next three years to “organizations working on lifesaving programs.” Road to Zero partners include, in addition to DOT and FMCSA, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, the Federal Highway Administration and the private non-profit National Safety Council.
“Our vision is simple – zero fatalities on our roads,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx. “We know that setting the bar for safety to the highest possible standard requires commitment from everyone to think differently about safety– from drivers to industry, safety organizations and government at all levels.”
Details on specific initiatives Road to Zero will promote are scant, but the DOT cites several areas in which it will concentrate, including promoting broader use of selt-belts, greater use of rumble strips, behavior campaigns and greater use of data in enforcement.
The DOT also points to the fast-developing field of vehicle automation as reason to “[believe] it is now increasingly likely that the vision of zero road deaths and serious injuried can be achieved in the next 30 years.”
Road to Zero partners hope to accelerate the development of advanced vehicle technologies, the DOT says, along with addressing infrastructure challenges of both today and the coming decades.