Since March, we in King County have slowed the spread of COVID-19 by staying home and keeping our distance. But did you know we’ve also prevented hundreds of traffic crashes by staying off the roads? Traffic crashes were 37% lower in March and more than 60% lower in April and May than the same time last year, which we’re all glad to see. With King County now in Phase 2 and more vehicles on our roads, we can work together to keep our streets safe. Here’s how:
Slow down! With less traffic, many people have been driving faster than usual. It may be tempting to speed up with an empty road in front of you, but speed limits keep everyone on the road safer and make it more likely to survive a crash.
Will you be meeting friends for drinks now that it’s allowed? If your plans involve alcohol or marijuana, you also need plans for a safe ride home:
- If you host a party, help guests get home safely
- Designate a sober driver
- Use public transportation
- Call an Uber, Lyft, or a cab
- Help friends and family find a safe ride home
Stay off your phone while driving! Distracted driving is still dangerous and against the law. With more people biking and walking, it’s even more important now. Keep your phone out of reach and your eyes on the road, and pull over if you need to read a text or make a call.
Forget how the car seat installs? Did your child have a growth spurt in quarantine? You can get a free car seat safety check at one of these in-person or virtual events.
Together, we can keep our roads safe during this pandemic. To learn more about our work to keep our streets and highways safer, visit our website. To learn more about the impact of COVID-19 on traffic, and other social and economic impacts of the pandemic, see our data dashboard here.
Public Health stands strongly against racial profiling and discrimination in traffic enforcement. If you believe this has happened to you, you can report it to a civil rights office in your city, at the state, or to the King County Office of Civil Rights if you live in unincorporated King County.
Originally published July 1, 2020.