According to officials at Fort Benning, which is located just outside of Columbus, Georgia, members of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Division, 3rd Infantry Division have gone 368 days without a traffic fatality. For over a year, the Brigade has sought to bring attention to the importance of motor vehicle safety, and motorcycle safety in particular. The Brigade initiated a program in June 2012, and continued the initiative even while nearly 2,000 of its troops were deployed in Kuwait. The program was initiated after two soldiers were killed in a motor vehicle accident last July. The accident occurred when their car hydroplaned and struck an oncoming truck on Interstate 20. Robert Topolewski, who serves as a safety and occupational health specialist for the Brigade says that the accident had a serious effects on other soldiers’ morale.
The Brigade implemented multiple motor vehicle safety initiatives.
Topolewski says that the program seeks to prevent motor vehicle accidents by educating troops regarding motor vehicle safety before it is too late. According to Topolewski, the success of the program is largely attributed to strong leadership that makes an effort to teach by example as well as, extensive training efforts. For example, the Brigade provides multiple safety courses for their estimated 300 motorcyclists. Soldiers were recently offered an eight hour safety course which included inspection of their motorcycles for safety issues. Over 230 soldiers attended this training. Another initiative under the program targets young soldiers who are at greatest risk for being involved in fatal motor vehicle accidents. The program encourages young soldiers to have their vehicles inspected for safety issues before going on leave.
Motorcycle accident fatalities have been a longstanding issue within the military.
Motorcycle accident fatalities have been a longstanding issue amongst military personnel, particularly those who ride sports bikes. In 2010, the Department of Defense sought to address the rise in motorcycle accidents within the military and to identify strategies for preventing motorcycle accidents and reducing motorcycle accident fatality rates. In order to do so, the Department of Defense commissioned the Motorcycle Safety Foundation to conduct focus groups throughout the United States. The focus groups identified motorcycling habits and attitudes among military personnel.
The increase in motorcycle accident fatalities among military personnel follows a nationwide trend. According to reports from both the U.S. Highway Administration and the Governors Highway Safety Administration, while fatalities resulting from motor vehicle accidents are generally on the decline, the country has experienced an increase in motorcycle accident fatalities.
If you or a loved one have been injured in a motorcycle accident, or if your loved one have been killed in a motorcycle accident, you should contact an attorney immediately. An attorney will be able to review the facts of your case and determine if someone is liable for your losses. If so, an attorney can help you receive the compensation you deserve.