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Legislation in New Mexico Helps to Reduce Car Accidents

31st March 2010
By Penelope Stone in Accident claims
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For over twenty-five years, the New Mexico Department of Transportation has been working with Safer New Mexico Now and local law enforcement agencies to encourage safer driving practices. Safer New Mexico Now utilizes traffic safety programs and advocates for increased protection of vehicle drivers and passengers as well as decreased accident-related deaths and injuries.

What does this Program do?

A large part of Safer New Mexico Now programming is put toward public education. The Injury Prevention Resource Center distributes a variety of injury prevention materials including informative posters and brochures which can be used by individuals or posted in classrooms across the state. On their website, Safer New Mexico Now also publishes material for parents, teaching them how to ensure the safety of their children by correctly using seat belts and car seats. It is estimated that 3 out of 4 child safety seats are misused, leaving children in danger during a car accident. Through their promotional material, Safer New Mexico Now strives to correct this problem and many others.

Partnership with Law Enforcement

Since the beginning of the program, Safer New Mexico Now has been working closely with local law enforcement agencies to promote various traffic safety initiatives. Programs such as Operation DWI and Operation Buckle Down were started to educate the public about the dangers of drunk driving and driving without a seat belt. Additionally, the law enforcement division has introduced a variety of outreach efforts including saturation patrols and sobriety checkpoints. All of these efforts have led to an increased awareness of New Mexico's drivers and the encouragement of safe driving habits.

Is it Working?

Officials at NMDOT have confirmed that since 1990, the number of alcohol-related traffic fatalities has dropped by a dramatic 40%. As a result of Safer New Mexico Now programs, drivers across the state have an increased awareness of the dangers of drunk driving. That, combined with more visible law enforcement has led to a decrease in instances of drinking and driving. Various promotional materials have succeeded in making the public aware of the risks of various driving behaviors and have educated drivers in ways to ensure their own safety as well as their passengers while driving.

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