Strive to The Vision Zero, by Brian Weiss, TE President
In an effort to expand the reach of Team Evergreen, Crawford Weiss, LLC and Bike Law, covered the expense for me to travel to the 2015 National Bike Summit #NBS15 on March 10-11, 2015 in Washington, DC. I networked with the two major national groups for bicycle advocacy. The Summit host was The League of American Bicyclists, and the secondary host was the Alliance for Biking and Walking. Both groups have the laudable goal of making America safer for pedestrians and cyclists.
One way of achieving this goal is through The Vision Zero Act. Cities across the world have adopted the goals of this this Act, which originated in Stockholm Sweden. Now, there is legislation in the U.S. House to providing funding for this goal to local governments. Denver and other Colorado communities need to set up a plan to be on the forefront of Vision Zero.
The League of American Bicyclists published data stating that more than 33,000 Americans are dying on our roads every year. Fatalities for people who were walking or riding a bicycle make up a growing share of those deaths. While one may think this is inevitable, many deaths are preventable.
The Vision Zero Act is founded upon the belief that ALL traffic fatalities are preventable. Thus, if more is done there should be ZERO traffic fatalities. The public is ready for a profound paradigm shift as 86% of 10,000 drivers surveyed by AAA support Vision Zero.
In order for Vision Zero to occur there has to be changes in roadway engineering, education, and enforcement. Of course, transportation needs to be safe, efficient, and accessible. If approved The Vision Zero Act would offer grants to local governments who set aggressive policies intended to end traffic fatalities in their jurisdictions. Approved local governments would then report back to Congress and the U.S. DOT the best practices and techniques utilized in moving toward Vision Zero.