America's roads now more dangerous than Russia's

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And that’s with no war going on here.


It’s interesting, if you look at the data, the miles driven in 2020 and 2021 went down noticeably, but the fatality rate spiked way up. I know why the miles driven went down. That’s COVID. Why did the fatality rate spike?


My take is that people stopped obeying speed limits, red lights or stop signs because nobody was out policing the roads during the pandemic. I still see a larger number of people running red lights than before. I personally drive faster. There haven’t been any street cops around or some time now.


Interesting. I wonder how the accuracy of data compares from one country to the next?

Many years back my grandparents had some houseguests visiting from Russia. I remember being amazed to hear them say that their biggest surprise during the trip was to see that American drivers were far more courteous than what they were used to. They said that back home if you wanted to be safe you would stop the car at green lights and look both ways before proceeding across the intersection because so many drivers just ignored the lights completely. But that was during the 90’s when things were probably especially chaotic in Russia.

Here in the US we need to get legislation and regulations on car designs to make them less lethal to pedestrians yesterday.


Interesting. That’s certainly not true in my part of New Jersey. Of course, in New Jersey, the predominant laws of driving are to (a) never let your speed drop even 0.000000001 mph below the speed limit, and (b) honk at anyone who does that or anything else you remotely find objectionable. Have I mentioned I hate driving in New Jersey? And don’t get me started on this state’s pathological fear of the left turn.


definitely agree. each generation of suvs just gets more and more dangerous. but i think it’d have to be at the very start of a democratic sweep of both houses and the presidency.

everyone will cry and wail over the loss of their tanks, and they would vote for the fascists to keep them, guaranteed. i actually think an outright ban would be more difficult than banning assault rifles.

i think when there were fewer cars on the road people got used to going faster, and that stuck.

also: left turn signals seem to be becoming optional now ( with right turn signals having vanished a decade ago. ) as a person who mainly bicycles, it’s a nightmare out there.


I think a lot of this has to do with size of the countries.
US and Russia are huge compared to UK and Japan.
You’d barely have time to get up to speed in either of those countries!

But if it’s a four hour drive to the airport, or 60 miles to work (both of which it has been for me at times) you are going to be spending more time on the road, at higher speeds, in a less toy-like car, all of which increase the likelihood of fatal collisions.

I wonder if the war + sanctions have made car travel less common in Russia in recent years.


Minor side point: now I’m really regretting not having that a cappella version of Cars played during my wedding ceremony. :joy:


The reason why people die is mqinly because of road design. The proven way to decrease road deaths are to stop blaiming the drivers and instead design roads that encourage better and safer behaviour and that makes sure that people survive when someone inevitably slips up.


I think you’re probably an outlier in terms of the distances you used to drive. Even in the US, most journeys are relatively short.

My view, based on the anecdotal, biased evidence of watching dashcam clips online, is that some American drivers are aggressive, selfish, and unskilled. It really is striking to see the difference in crashes between US and UK dashcam clips.

Obviously the use of outsize cars is facilitated by the wide roads and extensive parking the US has. I live in a rural area. There are some roads around here which I think the largest US SUVs and pickups might not fit into.


Regardless of the size of the country, the legal speed limit in Japan on public roads is 50km/h, and this drops down to 40 or 30 when you start to get into urban areas.

You can go between 100 and 120km/h on expressways, but the tolls are really expensive (as in, it’s cheaper to go by bullet train if you’re traveling alone).


That was my first thought. A great many of the younger generation are off the roads now, stuck on some godawful front line instead.


Unfortunately, the American car companies are pushing car bloat in the developed world as well. Cars everywhere are trending bigger and heavier, in general because bigger cars are more profitable. I think the only way to stop the trend is for the EU to make some serious moves limiting the size of vehicles, to stop incentivising this spiral.

Also, the other take away I have from that graph is that the UK has been flat-lining in the safety stakes since 2010, which is also the last time there was a change of UK government.And with their “war on motorists” rhetoric, it’s clear that there is going to be no progress until we get rid of them.


I guess we’ll just have to focus on our personal worst going forward.


I feel like if there was, the roads would be better because we would have to rebuild them.

I’m so tired of the giant trucks. I’m also tired of the mental midgets that need to oversteer them to make a turn.


My mental comment when I see someone in a huge SUV or pickup struggling to turn or park is “if you’re having difficulty, a smaller car would make that easier.”


Agreed. It may just be that with fewer cars on the road, people felt emboldened to drive like even bigger assholes.

Also perhaps contributing to this effect: Texas outlawed red-light cameras a few years ago. I noticed the difference in how people drove literally the day the law went into effect. Texas has about 9% of the U.S. population, so a change in Texas can have a noticeable effect on the whole country.


Who’s up for being lasered while driving?

The device’s sensor — which uses LIDAR laser sensing technology — relies on heat signatures to detect if a cellphone is in the driver’s hand. It also discerns whether the pupils of the driver’s eyes are fixed on the road or looking elsewhere. The sensor alerts the electronic sign which can display the message: “Put your phone down.”

But that’s not all.

The laser sensors, again relying on a heat signature, can detect whether a seat belt is across the driver’s chest. If not, the sign would flash: “Buckle Up.”

And to round out the smart sign’s capabilities, it also can detect speeding and warning drivers to “Slow Down.”


Only 75k? No thank you I’ll get the expensive one. /s