On Monday, the Maryland Department of Transportation Motor Vehicle Administration’s (MDOT MVA) Highway Safety Office announced the launch of its new website – ZeroDeathsMD.gov.
The new online home to the MDOT MVA is designed to ensure Marylanders have access to safety information, including easily accessible statewide crash data, resources and toolkits highlighting state programs and safety themes, and general information for law enforcement agencies, grantees, partners, and road users, with the ultimate goal being the elimination of roadway fatalities and serious injuries by 2030.
“Providing highway safety resources in a streamlined, user-friendly format is so important to continuing our mission to reach zero deaths on our roadways,” said MDOT MVA Administrator Chrissy Nizer, who also serves as Governor Larry Hogan’s Highway Safety Representative. “We appreciate all of the input that went into redesigning the website and will continue to find new ways to educate and engage all Marylanders.”
According to the department, Maryland roadways saw 574 fatalities in 2020, caused by the same factors seen in most years: impaired driving, distracted driving, aggressive driving, and speeding. Other key factors, the department said, were failure to wear a seat belt; failure to look twice for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists; failure to use a crosswalk; inexperienced drivers; and declining ability in older drivers.
Together, officials said, those factors led to more than 1,600 fatalities in Maryland over the past three years.
To combat the fatality rate, the new website features crash data in easy-to-read charts, broken out by statewide metrics. Major crash causes and jurisdictional breakdowns of crash data can help state agencies identify areas of concern, the department said. Additional databases, including the Fatality Analysis Reporting System (FARS) and Fatality and Injury Reporting System Tool (FIRST), can also be quickly accessed on the site.
“Sharing resources and information about highway safety and the impact of dangerous driving behavior is critical to support our law enforcement partners and the public,” MDOT Secretary Greg Slater said. “The new website is an important educational and motivational tool and sends the message that we all must work together to reach the goal of zero highway deaths.”