The trend is alarming. While other types of traffic fatalities have been declining, pedestrian deaths grew by 27 percent between 2007 and 2016.
According to the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA), nearly 6,000 pedestrians died in traffic accidents last year. It was the second year in a row with a death toll that high. Even more tragically, that represents a 25-year high, with pedestrian fatalities growing by 27 percent between 2007 and 2016.
How safe are we in America? How about in Colorado? Reports on the crime rates were just released by the FBI and the Colorado Bureau of Investigation (CBI). Colorado saw increases in both violent crimes and property offenses, the nationwide rates actually dropped, on average.
A recent report by the Governors Highway Safety Association indicates that we are seeing a lot more drugged driving. That may not come as a surprise, as the use of both cannabis and opioids has been on the rise. What should law enforcement and policy groups do?
The Alcotest 9510, a breath testing machine used by numerous police agencies, has been challenged in court in several states. Now, a report from two software engineering consultants who reviewed its source code has been distributed. That report is no longer available for intellectual property reasons, but the consultants expressed serious concerns about the reliability of the test results.
Reporting crime rates is important because it gives the public a sense of how dangerous their world is. Crime rates can also affect public policy, whether it is by pressuring Congress to pass new laws or by encouraging attorneys general to engage in crackdowns. Therefore, it's important for crime rates to be reported fairly and accurately -- and academic groups play a role in that.