Safety on the Roads, by Dave Werner

Pedestrians need to be vigilant at crosswalks

We continue to hear about how difficult it is to cross streets in Malone and Saranac Lake, and how drivers fail to give pedestrians their rights when crossing in crosswalks. However, there is a significant onus on pedestrians to be vigilant when crossing. Regardless of who should yield to whom, ...

Point and insurance reduction program beneficial

Most of us learn to drive at an early age, likely when we are in our teens. However, once we have our license, there is no requirement for refresher training, in spite of the fact that new vehicle and traffic laws are added every year.As I deliver traffic safety talks to various groups from ...

Electronic log mandate will improve trucking safety

It's common knowledge that some truck and bus drivers fudge their log books, sometimes keeping two log books for the same trip, thus providing the ability to "cheat" on the hours they have been driving.For nearly 30 years there have been efforts to require the ditching of paper logs in favor of ...

Poor driver behavior is biggest driving hazard

In a recent analysis in the American Journal of Public Health, traffic safety expert Leonard Evans, Ph.D., says that driver behavior is the sole or partial cause of nearly 95 percent of all crashes. Thus, the key to cutting traffic deaths and injuries is to focus more on driver behavior. That ...

Signs must fulfill a need

Signs, signs, everywhere! Wherever we drive, there are road signs all along the way; some should be there, some shouldn't. Cornell Local Roads Program holds day-long workshops, mainly for highway superintendents, on proper adherence to the national Manual on Uniform Traffic Control Devices, ...

Drowsy driving a potential problem for any driver

Last week's "Did You Know" article discussed the significant safety impact of centerline rumble strips on crashes involving distracted, drowsy or otherwise inattentive drivers who unintentionally stray over the center of the road. This week we will address drowsy driving, with information made ...

Centerline rumble strips reduce crashes

Centerline rumble strips, now quite common in our area, have significant safety implications. They were first introduced in Franklin County in the summer of 2013. The first highways to see them were state Route 37 between Fort Covington and Hogansburg, and state Route 30 between Tupper Lake and ...

Autobrake, forward collision warning offer safety

A vehicle's safety features should be the first thing to consider when purchasing any new car.Unfortunately, safety is often overlooked in favor of other factors totally unrelated to reducing crashes, injuries, and fatalities. This is likely because no one expects to be involved in a crash, but ...

Speed cameras used in Quebec

Do you drive much in Quebec? If you do, be advised that this province is rapidly expanding the use of speed cameras to get drivers to slow down.I frequently travel to Montreal and pass through at least two corridors where speed cameras are used: one along Route 138 between Ormstown and Ste. ...

Distracted driver study reveals dangers

Figuring out the role cellphone use and other distracting behaviors play in crashes is a challenge for researchers, according to an article in the December issue of "Status Report" from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.To get more data, an IIHS analysis of a naturalistic driving ...

Traffic stops stressful for cops

Police officers pull drivers over thousands of times daily, primarily because we as drivers continually violate vehicle and traffic laws (VTL).Don't believe this? Watch your own driving for even part of one day, and even if you are trying hard to not violate any laws, it is nearly impossible. ...

County traffic safety board part of state association

While the Franklin County Traffic Safety Board concentrates mainly on traffic issues in Franklin County, you might be interested to know it also belongs to the New York State Association of Traffic Safety Boards, with headquarters in Niskayuna, a suburb of Albany.The NYSATSB is a statewide ...

Minimum speed regulations explained

We all are aware of maximum speed limits, which are required to be posted along the highway, unless it is the statutory speed limit in New York State of 55 mph. However, NY vehicle and traffic law (VTL) includes a minimum speed regulation that you may not be aware of. Under VTL Section 1181 ...

Obstructing traffic at intersections prohibited

You're waiting for a red light at an intersection when it turns green for you - so far, so good. But you can't go because traffic on the other street is blocking the intersection.This situation is very frustrating - you can't go even though you have a green light, and vehicles on the other ...

Tailgating: We know we shouldn’t, but we still do

"Lookout!" Crash!" I looked up and there was this car, stopped in front of me, and I couldn't stop in time!" Sound familiar?The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety reports that 40 percent of automobile crashes involve tailgating, or more formally, following too closely. Drivers tailgate for ...

Test your Vehicle and Traffic Law IQ — Round 6 answers

Last week we presented 20 questions on vehicle and traffic law and traffic safety. Hopefully you took the test and saved your answers. This week we repeat the questions, give you the answers, and the authority for the answers. See how well you did.-True or false-1. A "two way left turn" lane ...

Test your Vehicle and Traffic Law IQ, round 6

An annual feature of these weekly articles is a 20-question quiz on Vehicle and Traffic Law and traffic control devices.The first 10 questions are true/false, and questions 11 to 20 are multiple choice. The answers will be found in next week's article and will include references for the ...

Roundabouts improve safety, efficiency in Champlain

Two new roundabouts are now in service on U.S. Route 11 at the junction with Interstate 87 in Champlain.These roundabouts, one on the west side and one on the east side of I-87, will go a long way to improve safety and reduce waiting time for traffic at this intersection.The new roundabouts ...

30,000 illegal passing incidents in one day

What is the most precious cargo transported over our streets and highways? If you answered "our children" to this question, I think you would be in the majority. If most of us believe our children are our most precious commodity, why, then, would 30,000 New York state drivers pass a stopped ...

‘Slow Down, Move Over’ law includes utility vehicles

I recently met with National Grid employees from the Malone facility, and they requested that I review and explain again the "Slow Down, Move Over" law and how it applies to utility vehicles such as line trucks, telephone trucks, cable TV vehicles, tow trucks and any vehicle parked, stopped, or ...