Anyone who has watched the news lately knows that too many pedestrians are being killed on Maryland streets. The speed of automobile traffic is one of the main causes of these tragedies. Its a shocking fact, but a person hit by a car at 30 mph has an almost 90 percent chance of surviving, while if that same person is hit at 40 mph the chance of survival is less than 20 percent.
Community Pace Car is a program that gives Maryland residents a chance to impact traffic safety by taking charge of their neighborhood streets. People who agree to the Community Pace Car pledge agree to do something simple - put the Maryland Community Pace Car sticker on the back of their car and do what the sticker says - drive the speed limit.
A person who joins the Community Pace Car team takes personal responsibility for the impact and example of his or her own driving. As a member of the team he or she keeps traffic at the posted safe speed on neighborhood streets.
Other cities and states have Pace Car programs of varying size and impact. But one thing is clear - only a small percentage of vehicles acting as Pace Cars can change the speed of motor vehicle traffic in a neighborhood. When enough people join, traffic can be calmed city or county-wide. This makes conditions safer for bicyclists, pedestrians and transit users. As safety conditions improve, people feel more comfortable walking, cycling or just waiting for the bus. This, in turn, makes conditions better for motorists by taking cars off the streets.
Remember, a successful Community Pace Car program leads to tangible benefits for ALL road users, including motorists.
Want to learn how you can join the Community Pace Car team? You can also stop by the Community Pace Car booth at this weekend's Tour du Port.