Eliminating Injury and Death on Canadian Roads
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$29.99 Paper, 360 pp.
It is possible to eliminate death and serious injury from Canada’s roads. In other jurisdictions, the European Union, centres in the United States, and at least one automotive company aim to achieve comparable results as early as 2020. In Canada, though, citizens must turn their thinking on its head and make road safety a national priority.
Since the motor vehicle first went into mass production, the driver has taken most of the blame for its failures. In a world where each person’s safety is dependent on a system in which millions of drivers must drive perfectly over billions of hours behind the wheel, failure on a massive scale has been the result. When we neglect the central role of the motor vehicle as a dangerous consumer product, the result is one of the largest human-made means for physically assaulting human beings. It is time for Canadians to embrace internationally recognized ways of thinking and enter an era in which the motor vehicle by-product of human carnage is relegated to history.
No Accident examines problems related to road safety and makes recommendations for the way forward. Topics include types of drivers; human-related driving errors related to fatigue, speed, alcohol, and distraction and roads; pedestrians, cyclists, and public transit; road engineering; motor vehicle regulation; auto safety design; and collision-avoidance technologies such as radar and camera-based sensors on vehicles that prevent crashes. This multi-disciplinary study demystifies the world of road safety and provides a road map for the next twenty years. Includes a foreword by Ralph Nader.
Neil Arason has worked in the field of road safety research for many years. He has contributed to numerous publications and studies and served as co-chair of a national task force on pedestrian safety. He believes that if Canada were to make road safety a major priority, deaths and serious injuries from motor transport could be eliminated as early as 2035.
“No Accident is a major work and it largely achieves its very difficult aim of understanding the complex issue of road crashes, one of the world’s primary causes of human trauma. The book advocates the safe system approach, the leading vision in the world today, and Arason explains in a clear way why we have road crashes and how best to prevent and even eliminate them. This book is a ‘must read’ for all stakeholders (including but not limited to engineers, policy-makers, the automotive sector, law enforcement, and public health). I hope reading this book will change their thinking on road safety.”
— Fred Wegman, professor of traffic safety, Faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences, Delft University of Technology, The Netherlands
“Working in a busy trauma centre, I find it hard to imagine a world without serious injury and death from road trauma. But that optimistic message, together with a detailed description of how it can be achieved here in Canada, is the theme of this captivating book. Extensively researched and illustrated with historical vignettes, news stories, scientific research, and interviews with experts, Arason’s book describes the safe system approach to road safety in everyday language. The book is a must-read for everyone with an interest in understanding and preventing road trauma.”
— Jeff Brubacher, MD, Emergency Physician, Vancouver, British Columbia
“This is not a narrow-gauged book. Instead, it is a very well-written and documented story, comprehensive in scope, motivating in design and elevating in its global humanitarian purposes. Mr. Arason also pays attention to getting around on the ground in much healthier ways than by motor transport.”
— Ralph Nader, from the Foreword