Safe roads key for any community

Mar. 22, 2013 @ 05:39 AM

It would seem that the roads in Rutherford County were about as safe as they could be in 2012.

A recent report detailed by The Daily Courier from the North Carolina Highway Patrol indicated that roads in District 2 Troop G’s coverage area — McDowell and Rutherford counties — all trended positive when it came to collisions in 2012.

The report said that injury collisions decreased by 11 percent and traffic fatalities dropped by 13 percent from 2011.

That is a positive direction that ensures the safety of motorists in the county.

“Any time we’re trending in a right direction, that’s a good thing,” NCHS First Sgt. J.C. McClelland told The Daily Courier.

And that’s not the only good news.

The report said that there were no teen fatalities in the district over the last year. McClelland called it “amazing” that there were zero and we completely agree.

In counties across the nation, teen traffic fatalities often grab the largest headlines and bring about the most discussion over traffic safety and the inability of teens to be safe on the road.

To live in an area where there were no teen fatalities on the road is a testament to our teen drivers taking their driver’s education to heart and those same drivers realizing that they are not only responsible for themselves in a vehicle but others around them.

The report also said that alcohol-related collisions have dropped nearly 25 percent over the last three years and alcohol-related fatalities have decreased by 75 percent during the last year.

The statistics also state that speed-related collisions have declined by 26 percent since 2010.

All of the facts and figures point to several things.

One is drivers in the county are more cautious and are paying more attention when they are on the roadways.

Second is that the North Carolina Highway Patrol has stepped up its education to demonstrate the dangers of driving irresponsibly. That is backed up by the fact that the NCHP reported an increase in education efforts by 67 percent.

Programs like “Booze It or Lose It,” “Click It or Ticket” and “Smoke in the Valley” are also enforcement campaigns that have led to lower collision and fatality statistics in the area.

Drivers are being safer and the North Carolina Highway Patrol have stepped up efforts to educate drivers to be safe and punish those that don’t heed the warnings.

Both drivers and the NCHP should be commended for their work in keeping the roadways in Rutherford County a safe place to drive.

By Matthew Clark, for the Editorial Board


The Daily Courier Editorial Board consists of community members Jerry Brewer, Kyle Bingham, Tom Padgett, Dr. Shermaine Surratt and Cliff Strassenburg as well as Editor Matthew Clark.