ATSSA says safer roads contribute to reduced highway fatalities

National data released on April 1 shows 32,788 people died on the nation’s highways in 2010, down three percent from 33,808 in 2009 according to a press release from the American Traffic Safety Services Association (ATSSA), which has more than 1,600 members involved in traffic safety and management.

Roger Wentz, president and CEO of ATSSA, said that safer roads are a major contributor in saving lives. “The Highway Safety Improvement Program (HSIP), a core federal-aid program, was created in August 2005 to help achieve a significant reduction in traffic fatalities and serious injuries on all public roads through infrastructure-related highway safety improvements. It is working.” Wentz said.

“Many of these improvements include the installation of brighter signs, innovative guardrails and crash cushions, rumble strips and numerous other roadway safety features and devices. These devices are undoubtedly are making out roadways safer and are saving lives,” according to Wentz.

Under the HSIP, DOTs across the country are promoting the use of these safety devices, which include cable median barriers and improved pavement edges to prevent run-off-the road accidents.

“Bright, reflective signs and roadway striping can be seen by the motorist in virtually any condition — day or night — and every time a motorist hits a rumble strip on the roadway’s edge line or centerline, they’ve just prevented a run off the road accident or a centerline crossing. More importantly, many of these lifesaving roadway safety features can be installed at a relatively low cost,” Wentz said.

The latest statistics reflect the lowest fatality rate since the United States records began in 1949.

ATSSA is headquarted in Fredericksburg, Va. Since 1969, ATSSA has represented companies and individuals in the traffic control and roadway safety industry.