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Kentucky Office of Highway Safety

 

 

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MISSION:

"To support effective and collaborative partnerships to advance traffic safety awareness, education, and enforcement in an effort to save lives on Kentucky roadways."


 The Kentucky Office of Highway Safety works specifically to save lives by reducing Kentucky’s highway crashes, injuries, and fatalities through relevant data-driven, outcomes-based approaches and effective program delivery.

 

 KENTUCKY HIGHWAY SAFETY NEWS



Kentucky Office of Highway Safety Joins NHTSA in Promoting Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month

Campaign highlights shared safety practices by all highway users

 

Frankfort, Ky. (May 5, 2021) – In recognition of May as Motorcycle Safety Awareness Month, the Kentucky Office of Highway Safety (KOHS) joins the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in reminding motorists and motorcyclists to "share the road" to help prevent crashes, injuries and deaths on Kentucky roadways.

"Safety is a mutual responsibility for motorists and motorcyclists alike," said Gov. Andy Beshear. "We're entering the warmer months and that typically means more drivers may operate motorcycles on our roadways. With more than 95,000 registered motorcycles in Kentucky, all road users must stay alert and look out for one another."  

According to NHTSA, per vehicle miles traveled, motorcyclists are approximately 28 times more likely than people in passenger cars to die in a traffic crash. Additionally, when motorcycles and other vehicles collide, it is usually the other (non-motorcycle) driver who violates the motorcyclist's right-of-way.

"As one of the smallest vehicles on the road, a motorcycle may 'hide' in a vehicle's blind spots, so we advise motorists to 'look twice to save a life' before changing lanes and making turns," said Transportation Cabinet Secretary Jim Gray. "Additionally, using a turn signal will alert motorcyclists of your intentions."

In 2019 there were 1,460 crashes involving motorcycles in Kentucky. Of those crashes, 762 involved a motorcycle and at least one other vehicle, while 662 involved only the motorcycle. 

"Just as we ask passenger vehicle drivers to obey all traffic laws, we expect the same from motorcyclists," said Gray. "Additionally, we ask that they take the extra step of using proper protective gear, including a helmet and reflective clothing."

The 1,460 crashes in 2019 resulted in 363 serious injuries and 86 deaths to motorcyclists.

The KOHS offers the following tips for drivers:

  • A motorcycle is a vehicle with all of the rights and privileges of any other motor vehicle. The person under that helmet could be a parent, sibling or friend;
  • Always allow a motorcyclist the full lane width – never try to share a lane;
  • Perform a regular visual check for motorcycles by checking mirrors and blind spots before entering or exiting a lane of traffic, and at intersections;
  • Always use turn signal before changing lanes or merging with traffic;
  • Don't be fooled by a flashing turn signal on a mo­torcycle – motorcycle signals are often not self-canceling and riders sometimes forget to turn them off. Wait to be sure the motorcycle is going to turn before you proceed;
  • Allow more following distance –  three or four sec­onds –  when behind a motorcycle to give the motorcyclist time to maneuver around obstacles in the roadway, or stop in an emer­gency;
  • Pay attention.

The KOHS offers the following tips for motorcyclists:

  • Wear a DOT-compliant helmet;
  • Use turn signals for every turn or lane change, even if the rider thinks no one will see it;
  • Signal intentions by combining hand signals and turn signals;
  • Wear brightly colored protective gear and using reflective tape and stickers to increase visibility;
  • Position in the lane where most visible to other drivers;
  • Never ride impaired; and
  • Take a rider training course. Find information at www.msf-usa.org  

For more information on motorcycle safety, visit NHTSA's website here.  


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 NATIONAL HIGHWAY SAFETY NEWS

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As Traffic Deaths Spike During COVID-19,

New Report Examines Unsettling Trend of Teen Drivers Speeding – and Dying – on America's Roads


WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), in partnership with Ford Motor Company Fund, today released a new report that examines the significant role speeding plays in teen driver fatalities and offers practical tools to help parents rein in this lethal driving habit. The new analysis for GHSA found that from 2015 to 2019, teen drivers and passengers (16-19 years of age) accounted for a greater proportion of speeding-related fatalities (43%) than all other age groups (30%). During this five-year period, 4,930 teen drivers and passengers died in speeding-related crashes.

The report, Teens and Speeding: Breaking the Deadly Cycle, is the first look in recent years at the role speeding plays in teen driver deaths and incorporates recently released data that includes state-by-state statistics. It sheds new light on what we know about speeding-related fatal crashes involving teens –- the driver is more likely to be male, have run off the road or rolled the vehicle, and be unbuckled. The data analysis was conducted by Richard Retting of Sam Schwartz Consulting.

While the report includes data through 2019, the new analysis of teen driving deaths is timely as overall traffic crashes have spiked during the COVID-19 pandemic and speeding on less-crowded than normal roadways is cited by states as a major factor in the surge in motor vehicle deaths. Parents may also have less time to spend training their teen drivers given other priorities during the pandemic.

The GHSA report also notes the risk of a teen driver being involved in a speeding-related fatal crash rises exponentially with each additional passenger in the vehicle. This is a worrying situation as more teens eager to see their friends may drive around together as COVID-19 vaccines become more readily available. These dangerous conditions were unfortunately demonstrated earlier this month, when seven Michigan teens between the ages of 17 and 19 were hospitalized when the teen driver left the roadway and rolled the vehicle. Speed was a factor and the crash happened late at night.

“Our country has a speeding problem that has only worsened during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said GHSA Executive Director Jonathan Adkins. “Thousands of people die needlessly on our roads because some drivers mistakenly think less traffic means they can speed and nothing bad will happen. The data tell us that teen drivers are the most likely to be tempted to speed, so the need to address this issue is more critical than ever given traffic death trends during the pandemic.”

The GHSA report identifies real-world, practical tools along with technology that parents can leverage to help rein in speeding teens, as well as re-evaluate their own driving behaviors. The latter is critical since speeding is typically passed down from parent to child. Surprisingly, one technology solution is a teen’s cell phone, which parents can use to track speeding, hard braking and other actions via apps. In-vehicle technology, particularly systems that allow parents to limit a vehicle’s top speed, can also help. Other tools discussed in the report include driver education and training, speed enforcement, graduated driver licensing laws, parent-teen orientation sessions and driving agreements, and peer-to-peer programming. All provide opportunities to address teen speeding.

For nearly 20 years, GHSA and Ford Motor Company Fund have worked together to address teen driver safety through the award-winning Ford Driving Skills for Life program. A signature program of the Ford Fund, Ford Driving Skills for Life has invested more than $60 million to provide free, advanced driver education to more than 1.25 million newly licensed drivers in all 50 U.S. states and 46 countries worldwide since 2003.

“Speed management continues to be a key component of our training and this report reaffirms its importance,” said Jim Graham, Ford Motor Company Fund Manager. “Teens don’t see speeding as a serious problem and parents likely don’t recognize how rampant it is for novice drivers, so teaching them about the impact is critical.”

On Thursday, Feb. 4, GHSA will host a webinar that takes a closer look at the troubling and persistent problem of speeding teens. GHSA Senior Director of External Engagement and nationally recognized teen safe driving expert Pam Shadel Fischer will share the report findings and discuss key recommendations with a panel of teen safe driving advocates.

About GHSA

The Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) is a nonprofit association representing the highway safety offices of states, territories, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico. GHSA provides leadership and representation for the states and territories to improve traffic safety, influence national policy, enhance program management and promote best practices. Its members are appointed by their Governors to administer federal and state highway safety funds and implement state highway safety plans. Visit www.ghsa.org for more information or find us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GHSAhq or follow us on Twitter @GHSAHQ.

About Ford Motor Company Fund

As the philanthropic arm of Ford Motor Company, Ford Fund's mission is to strengthen communities and help make people's lives better. Working with dealers and nonprofit partners in more than 50 countries, Ford Fund provides access to opportunities and resources that help people reach their full potential. Since 1949, Ford Fund has invested more than $2 billion in programs that support education, promote safe driving, enrich community life and encourage employee volunteering. For more information, visit www.fordfund.org or join us at @FordFund on FacebookInstagram and Twitter.


  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
  
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CURRENT KY ROADWAY FATALITIES FOR 2021

239

Click link below for further Daily Fatality Report Information

Daily Fatality Report - 5-14-2021.pdf

 

TOTAL YEAR TO DATE 2020

222

TOTAL KY ROADWAY FATALITIES FOR 2020

780

Click link below for the Year End 2020 Daily Fatality Summary Information

Daily Fatality Summary YE2020_as_of_04-14-21.pdf



 

Stop. Trains Can't.

The Right Choice at Railroad Crossings Could Save Your Life

 Don't Risk It at Railroad Crossings

  • Approximately every three hours, a person or vehicle is hit by a train in the United States.
  • Most of these deaths were caused by risky driving behaviors and poor decision- making, and could have been prevented.
  • Remember: Stop. Trains Can't. Avoiding a collision with a train is the responsibility of the motorist.

 Trains Always Have the Right of Way

  • By law, trains have the right of way at all railroad crossings.

  • Trains cannot swerve, stop quickly, or change direction to avert collisions. A train traveling at 55 miles per hour takes a mile or more to stop.

  • State highway traffic safety laws require all motorists to slow, yield, or stop until the train has cleared the roadway and it is safe to cross.

  • It is illegal to go around a lowered crossing gate or to ignore signs or flashing lights posted at a railroad crossing.

 Understand the Signage and Follow the Law

  • Of the 130,000 public railroad crossings in the United States, roughly 54 percent are "active" crossings that include warning devices such as gates, bells, or flashing lights to alert motorists of an approaching train. But 46 percent are "passive" crossings, where only signs and markings are present.

  • While warning devices do improve safety at railroad crossings, they do not prevent 100 percent of collisions. Approximately 60 percent of all collisions at railroad crossings occur where active warning devices are present, and nearly 19 percent of all crossing collisions involve a motor vehicle striking the side of a train already in the crossing.

  • Motorists must come to a complete stop at least 15 feet from the track if: 1) flashing red lights are activated, 2) a crossing gate is lowered, 3) a flagman signals you to stop, 4) a stop sign is posted, or 5) a train is clearly visible or you hear the whistle of a train.

  • Ignoring signage or attempting to go around a crossing gate that is down can have deadly consequences. It is never worth risking your life by ignoring the law or racing a train.

  • The best way to avoid a collision with a train is to understand and follow the warning signage, and to always stop for a train.

 Use Caution at Every Railroad Crossing

  • When approaching a railroad crossing, slow down, and look and listen for a train on the tracks, especially at "passive" crossings.

  • Look carefully in both directions before crossing a railroad track—even during the day. Sixty-seven percent of railroad crossing collisions occur in clear weather conditions.

  • Do not rely on past experience to guess when a train is coming. Trains can come from either direction at any time.

  • Never race a train. It is easy to misjudge a train's speed and distance from the crossing. A train traveling at 55 miles per hour takes a mile to stop—the length of 18 football fields or more—after applying the emergency brakes.

  • Before entering a railroad crossing, check that there is enough room on the other side of the tracks for your vehicle to cross completely and safely. Be aware that you may need to cross multiple sets of tracks at some railroad crossings.

  • Never stop on the railroad tracks. Keep moving once you have entered the crossing, and to avoid stalling, never shift gears on the tracks.

  • If your vehicle does stall on a railroad track, quickly move away from the track and your vehicle at a 45-degree angle. Call the number on the Emergency Notification System (ENS) sign, or if the ENS sign is not visible to you, dial 911 for help.

Remember: The Right Choice at Railroad Crossings Could Save Your Life.

Stop. Trains Can't.

 This information has been provided by NHTSA.

 

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​This page is maintained by Brad.Franklin@ky.gov, who may be contacted to make corrections or changes.

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