Tone: We’re all in this together and each of us plays a role (on and off the road) to ensure we all stay safe. The majority of Washingtonians are making safe choices when they are on the road, and we want to take this opportunity to thank them for their hard work.
- Today, WTSC is launching our new Together We Get There This announcement marks the start of a new systematic approach to improving safety on our state’s roadways.
- Together We Get There reflects WTSC’s shift in approach to building a positive safety culture in Washington state.
- This new approach builds on the shared beliefs and values that already exist in a culture to improve health and safety. In terms of traffic safety, this means engaging the majority of people who use the state’s roads safely in order to influence the smaller group engaging in risky behaviors.
- Essentially, by recognizing and reinforcing the positive safety norms that already exist in Washington, like wearing a seat belt or intervening to stop a friend from driving impaired, WTSC is creating a community that supports these safe behaviors and helps others adopt them.
- Historically, traffic safety campaigns have focused on individuals who are doing the risky behaviors – from not wearing a seatbelt, to driving under the influence, speeding, etc.
- Positive traffic safety culture focuses instead on engaging the majority of safe road users to influence the behaviors of the much smaller group engaging in risky behaviors.
- Positive traffic safety behaviors go beyond the driving task. Key examples:
- Families talking about and making rules around traffic safety.
- Schools promoting traffic safety in health classes.
- Community leaders and elected officials advocating for and passing laws to reduce risky behaviors.
- Healthcare providers talking to parents about child car seats.
- Workplaces establishing policies and training for employees.
- Washington already has many indicators of strong traffic safety culture:
- Most Washingtonians agree the only acceptable number of deaths on our roadways is zero.
- Seat belt use rate (93%) is one of the best in the nation.
- Most people (78%) do not drive after drinking
- Most drivers (91%) keep their focus on the road.
- These are proactive safety behaviors, deliberate choices most of us make every day that show a commitment to a safe roadway system.
The Washington Traffic Safety Commission (WTSC) is our state’s designated highway safety office. We share a vision with numerous other state and local public agencies. That vision is to reduce traffic fatalities and serious injuries to zero by 2030. The WTSC Director is the Governor’s Highway Safety Representative, which is a designated position each state is required to have in order to qualify for federal traffic safety funding. Our Commission is made up of 25 employees and ten Commissioners chaired by Washington’s Governor Jay Inslee.