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Good Things About Sky High Gas Prices

Every cloud has a silver lining - or so Amanda Ripley thinks when she wrote this interesting article for TIME Magazine about the sky-rocketing price of gas.

Here's one of the 10 Good Things About $4 Gas:

Fewer Traffic Deaths
Every year, about 40,000 people die in traffic accidents in the U.S. If you are age 5 through 34, you are more likely to die this way than any other way. Ordinary things we do — or don't do — have extraordinary consequences. We know that higher gas prices cause many of us to slow down and drive less — which means fewer people die. Early research into 2006 accident data suggests that many lives have already been spared. If gas remains at $4 per gal. for a year or more, expect as many as 1,000 fewer fatalities a month, according to professor Michael Morrisey at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and associate professor David Grabowski at Harvard Medical School, who calculated that estimate for TIME. That means annual deaths could be cut by almost one-third — a public-health triumph.

Link

(Photo: Nycotyne [Flickr])


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Sounds like a load of crap to me. High gas prices will cause SOME people to slow down. That will create a larger disparity between those who drive fast, and those who drive slow.

If everyone drives slow, that's safe. If everyone drives fast, that's safe. Mix the two together? You get traffic deaths.
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Compact cars may be less crumple resistant, but who wants to fill up the tank of an SUV with current gas prices? You fill up the car or you feed the kids. I guess some people figure a little more danger in one area is worth the trade-off.

If you really don't feel comfortable in a small vehicle, you can always take the bus.
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This story is pure bunkum, if the historical record of the 1970's is accurate.

After an initial reduction in road deaths (attributed to the rising cost of fuel = less passenger-miles), it was found that the actual road death count increased, as a result of:-

(a) more bicyclists and motorcyclists; and
(b) compact cars being less crumple resistant than large cars.

I can recall that when the blanket 55 mph speed limits were removed, Insurance companies noted a significant decrease in highway accidents, which was pt down to drivers concentrating more at higher speeds.
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Kind of ironic that a way to reduce oil usage and pollution is contributing to overpopulation. The environmentalist activists can't be happy with this news!
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