As part of Global Road Safety Week - being held November 9-14, 2009 -- Chevron is working with its employees to heighten awareness across the company of how choices as drivers, and as pedestrians, can affect the health and safety not only of ourselves, but also of others in the community. As part of this weeklong effort, Mario Andretti -- one of the all-time kings of the Indy Car racing circuit--visited the company's San Ramon headquarters today to speak with Chevron employees about how the choices of both drivers and pedestrians impact everyone's safety. A huh-yuge advocate of driving safety, Mario also lends his hand to Bridgestone's teen safety program with a downloadable safety booklet meant to educate young drivers. In addition to its special event held today, Chevron is communicating all week long with all its national employees with daily messages to highlight each day's specific theme, which include Driver Fatigue, Journey Planning, Speeding, and Defensive Driving.
The planned events for Chevron's Global Road Safety Week lead up to the United Nations World Day of Remembrance for Road Traffic Victims, on November 15th which commemorates all those killed and injured in road crashes, along with their families, the emergency service providers, and all others affected or involved in the aftermath of automotive accidents.
Chevron also wants to spread the road safety message beyond its own employees, saying "Everyone can each change their behavior to drive safely. We can practice defensive driving; we can exercise the willpower to stay focused on the task of driving; we can ensure we are visible to traffic if we have need to cross or step into a road; we can ensure that we are alert enough to drive, and we can choose to drive at speeds within the law and acceptable for road conditions."
Additionally, because more than 40% of all road traffic deaths occur among people younger than 25 years old, Global Road Awareness Week also focuses on educating such "young road users" as pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists, novice drivers, and their passengers.
As part of its global efforts, the World Health Organization (WHO) has created the "Road Marks" series of posters to raise awareness of ways to be safer on the road. The posters graphically illustrate their call to action and invite young people to be part of the solution: wear a helmet, never drink and drive, don't speed, wear a seatbelt, and be seen on the road. (Note: The five-poster series is available to all who organize events around the world to celebrate Road Safety Week and are available in a variety of languages.)
<-Too late to fasten your seat-belt: Wearing a seatbelt reduces the risk of being ejected from a vehicle and suffering serious or fatal injury by between 40%-65%. Be part of the solution: wear a seat belt.
->Too late to stop drinking: Consuming alcohol before driving increases the risk of a crash as well as the likelihood that death or serious injury will result. Passing a drink-driving law and enforcing it can reduce the number of road deaths by 20%.
Be part of the solution: never drink and drive.
<-Too late to be seen: Pedestrians and cyclists can be difficult to see on the roads, which increases their risk of road traffic injuries. Wearing lightly colored or reflective clothing makes them much more visible and can help avoid collisions. Be part of the solution: be seen on the road.
->Too late to put on your helmet: Most motorcycle deaths are a result of head injuries. Wearing a motorcycle helmet correctly can cut the risk of death by almost 40%, and the risk of severe injury by 70%. Be part of the solution: wear a helmet.
<-Too late to slow down: Speed kills all types of road users - drivers, pedestrians and cyclists. A 5% cut in average speed can reduce the number of fatal crashes by as much as 30%. Be part of the solution: don't speed.
Be especially aware of road safety this week, and say a special prayer of remembrance on Sunday, November 15, for those people touched by the tragedy of an automotive accident.