If they didn’t create enough havoc already with the deaths and injuries they cause on the nation’s roads, Americans’ cars, trucks, and motorcycles also create other big consternations, including harmful commuting stress, rising pedestrian carnage, and tough calls about when seniors ought to be forced to give up driving.
Just how soon will it be before computers, robots, and autonomous vehicles ride to our rescue? Maybe not fast enough.
Too many motorists, especially in urban centers, may see their heads and bodies blow up — in figurative fashion — due to the daily strains of trying to navigate traffic gridlock, reported Austin Frakt, director of the Partnered Evidence-Based Policy Resource Center at the V.A. Boston Healthcare System, associate professor with Boston University’s School of Public Health, and adjunct associate professor with the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. He wrote in the New York Times’ research- and evidence-based “Upshot” column that Americans spend 42 hours annually stuck in rush-hour jams, and traffic’s toll for lost time and wasted fuel exceeds $100 billion.