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Word Count: 492
It is a familiar scene during prime-time television A young woman is shown driving a red Mitsubishi Eclipse down a country road at very high speed The woman is -on her way to her grandparents home and the car is going so fast that it makes the house rumble when she arrives Meanwhile the announcer declares Its uncommonly fast and fun to drive and it makes quite an entrance The steady stream of advertisements like these which continue to promote dangerous driving behavior despite enormous publicity about the epidemic of aggressive driving has shocked many members of the Partnership for Safe Driving In March 1999 the Partnerships public policy committee sent letters to the CEOs of 14 major auto-makers in the United States urging them to stop promoting speeding and reckless driving in their television commercials The committee expressed particular concern about the potential of these ads to influence the behavior of young drivers Speeding has been implicated as a contributing factor in about one-third of all fatal motor-vehicle crashes In addition increased attention has been given to other unsafe driving behavior -- running red lights tailgating cutting other drivers off etc Which may lead to crashes However very little information is available on when where and under what conditions drivers engage in speeding and other unsafe driving actions or behaviors nor is there adequate information on the types of drivers who engage in these behaviors Speed reduces the amount of available time needed to avoid a crash increases the likelihood of crashing and increases the severity of a crash once it occurs The public needs to be made more aware of the dangers of speeding If we are to combat this dangerous life-threatening behavior we must devote increased resources to better enforcement including more law enforcement officers to patrol the highways and we must support technological advances such as video cameras to target aggressive speeding drivers Speeding is defined as travelling faster than
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