U.S. Department of Transportation head, Pete Buttigieg, announced that this week that $5 billion from the recent infrastructure bill would be used to address traffic safety as traffic deaths have soared in recent years. Buttigieg stated that the money would flow tocities around the country over the next five (5) years. The money will slowing down cars, carving out bike paths, wider sidewalks and encouraging commuters to public transit. The department titled the new program “Safe Streets & Roads For All.” More specifically, the Department state the money would focus on adding rumble strips to slow cars or installing speed cameras, which the department says could provide more equitable enforcement than police traffic stops; flashing beacons for pedestrian crosswalks; new “safe routes” via sidewalks or other protected pathways to school or public transit in underserved communities; and other “quick build” roadway changes designed with community input. Roadway deaths represent about 95% of all U.S. transportation deaths, at more than 38,000 in 2020. In 2021, data released so far has already shown U.S. traffic fatalities rising to 31,720 through the third quarter, the highest nine-month period since 2006. Before 2020, the number of U.S. traffic deaths had fallen for three straight years. “We face a national crisis of fatalities and serious injuries on our roadways, and these tragedies are preventable – so as a nation we must work urgently and collaboratively to save lives,” Buttigieg said. He said the money “will help communities large and small take action to protect all Americans on our roads.” “We have become far too accustomed to the loss of life and serious injuries happening on our roadways,” he said. Let’s hope cities (including Chicago) can work quickly with the Department of Transportion so that these plans can be implemented. Traffic fatalities have risen sharply, especially since the pandemic began, and thoughtful safety plans should help curb this trend for all americans whether you live in a rural community or a big city and everywhere in between. If you or a loved one has been seriously injured in a Chicago traffic accident or Chicago truck accident, then call Chicago injury lawyer, Aaron J. Bryant for a free legal consultation at 312-614-1076.