Involvement in a Tuscaloosa car accident typically happens suddenly and without warning.
The only way to prepare is to steel yourself before each and every trip, no matter how seemingly insignificant. That means buckling your seat belt, making sure the kids are properly restrained, keeping your vehicle in good working condition and remaining alcohol and distraction-free.
Now, it may also mean affixing a yellow dot to the back of your vehicle.
Officials in Tuscaloosa are unveiling the “Yellow Dot Program,” which gives first responders more tools to provide effective emergency care in the event you are incapacitated in a crash.
The program works like this: You affix a free, city-provided, bright yellow circle sticker to the back of your vehicle. You fill out a basic emergency medical form that includes information such as allergies, emergency contact information and any special conditions about which health care personnel should know. That form then goes in your glove box. If you are in a crash, the yellow dot alerts authorities that they can easily find important health information in your vehicle. This way, they aren’t wasting potentially precious time trying to track down your medical history or loved ones.
This will result in faster, more effective care, which is important whether you are a senior citizen or a high school senior.
Consider that in Alabama, a traffic crash is reported every four minutes, according to annual traffic statistics provided by the University of Alabama. A person is injured in an Alabama traffic crash every 14 minutes and a person is killed in an Alabama wreck about every 9 hours and 45 minutes.
There were nearly 900 people killed in Alabama crashes in 2011 – an increase of nearly 4.3 percent – and for every person killed, 42 more were injured. While about two-thirds of all crashes in the state occur in urban areas, the ones that unfold in rural areas are deadly. Rural crashes account for less than 25 percent of all wrecks, and yet 60 percent of all traffic deaths.
Tuscaloosa, Jefferson and Shelby Counties have the highest crash risk in the state.
The greatest risk factors include:
All of these are, of course, preventable actions.
For example, in Tuscaloosa County, 8 out of 28 fatal wrecks were alcohol-driven. That’s nearly a third.
And just recently in Bibb County, a 24-year-old man was killed and two others seriously injured in a head-on collision after an oncoming motorist attempted to pass another vehicle on a hill. Multiple individuals were ejected from the vehicles upon impact. That crash is still under investigation.
Unfortunately, your control your roadway safety only extends to what you can do. Because you can’t control whether other drivers will be responsible, you can’t always prevent a crash. But you can make sure if you’re in one, that you’re prepared.
That’s why we look forward to the expansion of the Yellow Dot Program.
Yellow Dot program opens in Tuscaloosa, Sept. 23, 20913, Staff Report, WBRC MyFoxAl.com