Drivers in West Virginia may be wondering just what can be done to improve road safety conditions. After all, traffic fatalities are now on the rise again after several years of decline. In 2016, there was a nationwide total of 37,461 traffic fatalities, which was 5.6 percent more than the previous year. The increase was felt by 39 states in 2016.
With this situation in mind, the National Governors Association has published a report filled with strategies for reducing highway and traffic fatalities across the U.S. Aimed primarily at state governors, the "road map" provides a kind of policy development tool that can be adapted to the needs of each state.
Governors are key players in the improvement of road safety policy. They can coordinate efforts between different state agencies and identify any areas within the state that simply need to be strengthened. Furthermore, governors can act as leaders in collaborations between those agencies. The ultimate goal of the NGA is lofty -- zero traffic fatalities.
Of course, safety regulations cannot dissuade every driver from engaging in negligent behavior. When negligence leads to a traffic accident, the victims will have to pay for vehicle repairs and medical care through no fault of their own. However, a victim may be reimbursed for damages by filing a claim against the at-fault party's auto insurance company. Legal representation can be vital during the claims process. A lawyer could assess the claim, have the accident investigated and negotiate for a settlement out of court at first. Litigation can be used as a last resort.