Nurses' association ranks states based on highway safety laws

| 11/28/2006

Washington, DC, and the state of Washington received the highest marks and Arizona the lowest in a new report ranking states based on whether their highway laws promote safety and injury prevention.

On Nov. 16, the Emergency Nurses Association released the report, titled "2006 ENA National Scorecard on State Highway Laws: A Roadmap for Injury Prevention." According to a press release, the scorecard is designed to educate legislators and the general public about their states' strengths, weaknesses and levels of risk.

The scorecard rankings were based on the group's evaluation of states' highway safety policies, including primary seatbelt laws, child passenger safety laws, graduated driver's licenses, universal motorcycle helmet laws, and the state's capacity to respond to severe emergencies.

"The scorecard is designed to educate ENA members and the general public about each state's strengths and weaknesses so that they are empowered to advocate for change," said Nancy Bonalumi, ENA president. "While we can not be free of risk, it is necessary to take all possible steps toward preventing injury."

Locations with the most highway safety and injury prevention laws in place, according to the study, include Washington, DC, Washington state, California, Georgia, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon and Tennessee.

States with the fewest highway safety and injury prevention laws in place include Idaho, North Dakota, Ohio, Arkansas, Minnesota, South Dakota, and Arizona.