When one gets behind the wheel of a vehicle and drives others, they are directly responsible for more than just their own life. The driver must take this responsibility seriously and continue to drive to the best of their ability. In 2019, 62% of all traffic fatalities were passengers. We Save Lives and the National Road Safety Foundation are taking a stance against this by celebrating National Passenger Safety Week (NPSW).
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) officially recognized National Passenger Safety Week for the first time in 2023. The last full week of January annually is dedicated to raising awareness of passenger safety. The purpose of NPSW is to encourage passengers to intelligently speak up when they are put in potentially dangerous situations by an irresponsible driver. Drivers are educated on how to keep their passengers safe, and passengers are taught how to respond to unsafe situations as well as how to avoid them. “By inspiring the courage and providing the verbiage, we hope to empower passengers to speak up when in a car with an unsafe driver” stated a source from We Save Lives. National Passenger Safety Week is helping break the stigma of passengers being silent and not speaking up in dangerous situations. The more the public is aware of these practices the safer everyone will be on the roadways
It is a passenger’s responsibility to gauge how safe they feel about riding with any specific driver. In a situation where you do not feel safe, do NOT enter the vehicle. Attempt to convince the driver to refrain from driving until they can do so more safely. You are not completely powerless and you CAN make a difference by speaking up to the driver.
Passengers are also responsible for making sure they are safe while riding in a vehicle. Ensure you buckle your seat belt and do not distract or impair your driver.
If you are about to ride with someone who you believe is impaired you can:
- suggest the driver take some time off before driving
- call someone else to provide a ride
- offer to drive the car
- refuse to ride with them if they insist on driving
Drugs and alcohol can impair one’s cognitive functions, including logical reasoning, which can lead to bad decision-making. If a passenger can keep even a single impaired driver off the road, they are keeping more than just one life out of danger.
We Save Lives is an organization focused on supporting and promoting solution-driven policies and programs that save lives by changing dangerous driving choices through viral awareness, education, advocacy, and partnerships. They have teamed up with the National Road Safety Foundation to promote the NPSW campaign through all accessible platforms.
The National Road Safety Foundation has partnered with over 50+ organizations to spread the message of National Passenger Safety Week. The magnitude of this campaign is a testament to how important the message is, and how eager organizations are to see timely results. No matter how small you feel your contribution is- you can still do your part. Be a responsible passenger and teach your friends how to be one too.
About Top Driver
Top Driver is the Midwest’s Premier Driving School with over forty classroom locations. Since its inception in 2003, it has provided more teen driving lessons and classroom sessions than any other Midwest private driving school. The “Top Driver Difference” focuses on contemporary training, convenience, and extensive resources for both students and parents. Top Driver equips students with the knowledge and skills necessary to become safe, intelligent drivers.