Maryland MVA Transportation Road Safety Updates

Maryland MVA Transportation Road Safety Updates

mva transportation

The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration (MVA) introduced new safety updates and initiatives to mark the new year. If you’re a driver in Maryland, it’s important to be aware of the MVA’s recent announcements, as they aim to reduce the number of crashes and their resulting injuries and deaths.  

crash deaths

The MVA launched these initiatives in response to a sharp rise in road fatalities in Maryland. There were 600 people killed in crashes in 2023, which is the highest number of crash deaths in a single year since 2007. 

In this blog, you’ll learn about the Maryland MVA’s announcement and suggestions for enhancing road safety.

Additionally, if you’ve suffered from a crash and have questions regarding insurance and compensation, contact the Maryland car accident attorneys at Zirkin & Schmerling Law. 

“Be the Driver Who Saves Lives”

The Maryland Motor Vehicle Administration launched its initiatives with a new campaign: “Be the Driver Who Saves Lives.” This campaign highlights that Maryland drivers need to operate their vehicles with caution and the utmost focus. 

driver who saves lives

The campaign emphasizes that most road fatalities are entirely preventable, and every motorist needs to do their part in driving safely. In this theme, the campaign features various slogans related to safe driving, including “Be the Sober Driver,” “Be the Make a Plan Driver,” “Be the Buckled-Up Driver,” “Be the Focus Driver,” and “Be the Slow Down Driver.” 

These slogans implore drivers to avoid distractions while behind the wheel — such as texting — follow the designated speed limits, and buckle up for safety. People must always drive sober as well, as crashes caused by driving under the influence are common and avoidable.  

Emphasizing “Crashes” Rather Than “Accidents”

As the Maryland MVA is urging drivers to adhere to safe driving practices, it’s also stressing that vehicle collisions should be referred to as “crashes” instead of “accidents.” The reason for this is that most Maryland traffic incidents are preventable, and drivers usually make conscious choices that result in these collisions. 

intoxicated driver

For instance, an intoxicated driver chose to drink and drive — it wasn’t an accident that they drove while under the influence and caused a collision as a result. Further, reckless motorists choose to drive over the speed limit or while distracted, so the word “crash” is more accurate than “accident.” 

By emphasizing that avoiding collisions is a choice, the Maryland MVA aims to hold drivers accountable for their actions. We all need to make a conscious choice to follow road laws and drive in a way that mitigates the risk of crashing. 

Maryland’s Move Over Law

Like numerous states, Maryland has what’s known as the “Move Over” law, which states that drivers need to either slow down or change lanes when passing a parked vehicle with warning signs. These signs may be hazard lights, traffic cones, or another warning indicator. 

Maryland’s “Move Over” law isn’t new, but this year, the Maryland MVA reiterated the importance of driving with the utmost caution when approaching work zones and road workers. Motorists must drive carefully near work zones and maintain a safe distance to protect those working on the side of the road. 

Ensure Your Vehicle Is Safe

mva transportation

In addition to driving cautiously and following the law, Maryland motorists need to make sure that their vehicles are road-safe. You must address any mechanical issues with your car, such as brake problems, under-inflated tires, or anything else that can make your vehicle unsafe. 

You should also make sure that your vehicle hasn’t been recalled. The Motor Vehicle Administration sends out recall information to drivers, but it’s best to also check the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s website to ensure your vehicle hasn’t been recalled. You’ll need your Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) to verify your vehicle status. 

Another critical part of driving safely is obtaining the right equipment for child passengers. Those under the age of 2 must sit in a rear-facing child safety seat, and this seat must adhere to federal safety regulations. After they outgrow the seat, the child should sit in a booster seat until they’re 8 years old or reach the height of 4 feet and 9 inches. 

Prepare for Emergencies

Finally, the Maryland MVA stated that being prepared for emergencies is critical. The most important thing you can do as a driver to prepare for emergencies is to stay vigilant and practice good judgment. 

You can also prepare for an unexpected situation by having an emergency kit in your vehicle. This kit should include jumper cables, reflective triangles, a flashing warning light, a flashlight, a reflective vest, water, and a blanket. You should also always have tools to replace your tire as well as a quality spare. 

Contact a Maryland Car Accident Attorney Today

The Maryland MVA’s recent initiative stresses the importance of driving safely and ensuring your vehicle is ready for the road. Unfortunately, not everyone will follow these necessities, as it’s impossible to eliminate dangerous driving entirely.

If you were involved in a crash with a negligent driver, you can file a claim to recover compensation for medical bills, lost wages, and other damages. For legal assistance after an accident, contact the Maryland car accident lawyers at Zirkin & Schmerling Personal Injury Attorneys. 

Call us today at 410-753-4611, or you can get in touch with us online for a free consultation.