The Safety Bureaucracy Moves Online

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With respect to the development of more practical and effective safety measures, lawmakers and regulatory agencies are an important influence on the automotive industry as well as its consumers. One of the most effective ways in which the powers that be are developing and communicating the road safety standards is through the use of the internet and mobile devices.

When I moved across the country a few years back, I knew that there were some differences between the regions in terms of their overall road safety standards. In one area the speed limit was 10 km/h higher on the freeway than the other. Also, the new area had – and I counted once – 17 crosswalks on the way from where I lived to where I worked. The driving styles are different too: the old place was much more aggressive, as it had a larger population. The new place ran at a much slower speed, pedestrians ruled the roads and drivers would stop in the middle of any road except the highway to let them cross.

My girlfriend and I had several conversations about this on the long drive over. We wondered what the differences were between licensing systems and whether or not the fines and offences were the same.

In order to learn more about the differences I went online and simply searched for regional safety standards. Search engines these days will use the location associated with your computer’s IP address in order to prioritize search returns that are linked with your geographic area.

In Canada, one can find a plethora of resources on provincial websites about safety precautions and driver’s education in each respective region. They’ve even moved several of their kiosk services online which has reduced wait times and overall apathy towards the bureaucracy that was originally designed to help increase safety.

One of the services that is not available online is getting a new license. You have to show up to the actual kiosk in order to prove you are who you say you are, which of course is a safety measure designed to keep the licensing system effective. However, by posting the information online that I needed to bring with me in order to get my new license the province has significantly reduced wait times and extra trips.

The more connected the traffic and road safety authorities become, the more effective their safety measures are. Most people simply aren’t aware of new changes in the law. My generation goes to the Internet for our information – we tweet, post, like and BBM each other. If the information is online (and in a decent format) then it stands a good chance of going viral based simply on the way current technology allows us to talk to one another. The best way to ensure a higher standard of safety is to make sure it gets communicated and the internet is one of the most effective ways to do so.

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