NTSB Chair Homendy Calls on Local Highway Safety Leaders to ‘Fight Like Hell’ for Safer Roads


Photo of Chair Homendy

Chair Homendy gives remarks before the Lifesavers National Conference On Highway Safety Priorities. NTSB photo by Bryan Delaney

CHICAGO (March 15, 2022) – National Transportation Safety Board Chair Jennifer Homendy challenged local advocates and safety leaders Tuesday to "fight like hell" and use the “Safe System Approach" to reduce rising deaths and injuries on our nation's roads.

The Safe System Approach is a proven way to reduce highway deaths and injuries by taking a holistic look at the entire roadway system, from planning to design to use -- making all roads safer for all roadway users. Moving to a Safe System Approach is on the NTSB's Most Wanted List of transportation safety improvements and has recently been embraced by the U.S. Department of Transportation. More information on Safe System: https://go.usa.gov/xzn47

In a keynote speech closing out the 2022 Lifesaver's conference here, Homendy said it was a “watershed" moment for the roadway safety community.

“Finally, some things we've all been advocating for are now part of the first-ever National Roadway Safety Strategy from the U.S. Department of Transportation, a national call for a paradigm shift in traffic safety to the Safe System Approach, which is on NTSB's Most Wanted List of transportation safety improvements," Homendy said.

“At the highest levels, we're now talking the same language," Homendy said. “Systems thinking isn't new. It's certainly not new to other industries. Systems thinking in highway safety used to be a radical idea only discussed by experts at events like this. Congratulations to each and every one of you for shouting our safety message from the rooftops — you've moved the needle!"

The NTSB chair said it is now up to local leaders to create the reality on the ground in their own communities. And Homendy asked activists to personally let her know through Twitter precisely what they are doing.

“What is the one thing YOU are going to do when we leave here or close the livestream? I'm not talking about an easy thing. I want you to dig deep, pick a hard thing," Homendy challenged. “Put it in writing: Tweet me your personal commitment: @JenniferHomendy. Use the hashtag #Lifesavers2022."

Homendy closed the conference by referencing a rallying cry from the labor movement. She told attendees to “mourn the dead and fight like hell for the living. We are Lifesavers!"

To report an incident/accident or if you are a public safety agency, please call 1-844-373-9922 or 202-314-6290 to speak to a Watch Officer at the NTSB Response Operations Center (ROC) in Washington, DC (24/7).