Worldwide, more than 3.5 million people (active and recovered) have contracted the COVID-19 or Coronavirus since its beginning in December 2019 through May 1, 2020, and more than 248,000 people have died from the virus in the past five months.
During this same period, another plague has killed an estimated 500,000 people and injured more than 4-million worldwide. In the U.S., this syndrome will kill an estimated 13,000 people in the first four months of 2020. What is this killer? Road accidents involving cars, trucks and buses.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 1.25 million people die in road accidents every year, and another 20 million to 50 million are injured worldwide. Compared to COVID-19 cases and death rate, you have a 60 times greater chance of dying in a car crash.
Doctors and scientists are currently working on a cure for Coronavirus. Some estimates say it will take them up to six months to a year. Demand for prevention in the form of hand sanitizer, anti-bacterial wipes and face masks has outstripped production.
To stop the continuing epidemic of road deaths, affordable cures are readily available. Some of the treatments include better road designs and driver training. But, other remedies involve the vehicles themselves.
In a 2019 survey, research firm IMR Inc. estimated there is $24.9 billion (USD) in delayed maintenance and repair in the U.S. They estimated more than 5 million brake jobs had been neglected in the previous 12 months. When brakes are neglected, stopping distances increase and the potential for a fatal accident grows. If just .001% of vehicles with neglected brakes were involved in fatal accidents, it would cause 5,000 deaths in just the U.S. alone.
Endless hours of media coverage have been devoted to the Coronavirus crisis over the past few months. The chaos will likely last another four to six months. But, the road fatality body count will just keep increasing long after COVID-19 is a forgotten news story.
If you want to prevent one of your customers becoming one of the 1.2 million people who die in vehicle crashes worldwide, make sure you are performing inspections and performing repairs to the highest standards. If your state is thinking about doing away with vehicle inspections, speak up!