Stop, Look, Listen … and Enjoy

By Debbie Hersman

Whether you travel by auto, plane, train, or sleigh, we wish our readers safe travels.

Here at the NTSB we are committed to safety. We tell people to buckle up for safety; to stop, look, and listen at railroad tracks; or to be well rested before they get into the cockpit. Last week, we issued a nationwide call for people to put down their cell-phones and pay attention to the road while they are driving.

We do have a lot to say, but we make these recommendations because we see the tragic results. When the NTSB recommends a nationwide ban on personal electronic devices, or that motorcycle riders wear helmets, or that boaters wear personal flotation devices, we are doing what the facts from our investigations and studies tell us can save lives.

Each year, there are just too many tragic losses. Last year, more than 32,000 people died on our roadways — from alcohol-impaired crashes, from distraction, from fatigue, and more. Our staff work hard every day to learn what happened, make recommendations, and then advocate for change so there won’t be needless and tragic losses.

We want everyone to get home safely, especially at this time of the year when it is so important for families and friends to be together.

On that note, I hope all of our Safety Compass readers have a safe and joyous holiday season and a wonderful 2012.

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