Sunday, 13 April 2008

Worlds biggest killer

For this next post I am returning to something already visited in my blog, road traffic accidents.

This has been brought on by exposure to another catalogue of incidents and I can only see these increasing in our lifetimes.

I was reading one of the Sunday papers the other week and came across an article relating to a WHO (World Health Organisation) report on road traffic accidents that had identified that RTA's were the biggest killer in the world for the age group under 25. With nearly 400,000 young people killed a year it is far higher that AIDS or any other disease and that figure doesn't include those that survive with disabilities.

Later this week I read that one of Liverpool FC's academy hopefuls was involved in a car accident which sadly two of the other passengers died in and one other is still in intensive care.

Then just this morning I read of an accident near my home village that has killed 4 and seriously injured 2 others.

My thoughts and prayers go out to all involved in road traffic accidents and hope that the survivors make a full recovery.

When I had my last accident, a Police office corrected me when I used the term RTA, they no longer call them RTA's but now called them RTI (Road Traffic Incident) which I saw as a positive step. This was because most incidents were caused by something, they weren't just accidents. I don't know the details of either of the above mentioned collisions and therefore I am not inferring anything to those particular cases.

But the two I have been involved in from my knowledge were not accidents, somebody took and action that caused the collision. This action might have been tuning the radio or answering your mobile, or talking to someone in the rear of the car, it doesn't have to be overtaking or some other more dangerous action.

We all seem to think that it will never happen to us, until it does . . .

Cars are inherently dangerous, large over 1 ton objects that can travel at speeds of over 100mph. Would you answer your mobile while pointing a gun at a stranger or look over your shoulder while taking aim? That's effectively what you are doing. I still see some many people talking on their mobiles while driving, but don't worry they're good drivers and nothing will ever happen to them.

Yesterday a watched a women coming through the lights on Eccleshall Road, Sheffield in her large Mercedes 4x4 nonchalantly chatting away on her mobile while negotiating a corner onto a dual carriageway with traffic lights, but don't worry she's a good driver, we're all safe. I see drivers driving down slip roads onto the motorway while chatting on their mobiles, but don't worry it won't happen to them. For want of a better description, all of these people are idiots risking my life and the life of all those around them for the sake of a phone call, yes you madame in your Mercedes 4x4 you're an idiot, you may look smart and intelligent and hold down a cushy job, but to me that's all you are, an idiot.

One of my friends stated something the other day that rang so true that I thought I would share it with you, he said "in years to come they'll look back on this era with horror, I mean what madman would drive around in a metal box, passing other people in metal boxes at combined speeds of up to 120mph with only centimetres between them, protected only by an air bag and seatbelt?"

Pay attention while you drive, it could only be a short time you are in the car, but it could affect the rest of your life and several others that you have never met.

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