March 11 2006: It is always gratifying to find our work at DSA proving helpful — whether to individuals or corporations — so the following link, found unexpectedly on the Chevron Corporation safety website, is very pleasing:
“[The] Drive and Stay Alive website. Founded by Eddie Wren (see our PEOPLE page), this site goes deep into comparisons of teaching methodologies and articles from around the world. A MUST SEE site for anyone researching driver safety.”
Thank you for your kind words, Chevron.
February 6, 2006: At DSA, we were delighted that our Director, Eddie Wren, was invited to attend the Italian Road Safety Exhibition in May, as a speaker and round table participant. Unfortunately, prior driver safety commitments made this impossible but it was gratifying to be asked.
December 6, 2005: Our daily hits record reached a new high, with fractionally over 38,000 hits to the DSA website today.
November, 2005: DSA was contacted by and quoted in the Christian Science Monitor.
August 27, 2005: The Sri Lanka Daily Mirror published the DSA ‘Following Distances’ article on their page 3, though they passed it off as being their their own article.
Our pleasure from this overcomes our annoyance at the disrespect involved for two reasons:
1. No less than three of our Sri Lankan readers identified the article and reported the breach of
copyright to us; and
2. At least a reasonable number of people on that beautiful island did get to see some accurate
information on safe following distances.
Our sincere thanks to those who kept us in the picture and, indeed, to Raditha Dissanyake who published a reprimand to the Daily Mirror on his ‘blog.
July/August, 2005: All in the period of a few days, Drive and Stay Alive:
a) Received a Commendation “for outstanding commitment to international highway safety” from
the Governors’ Highway Safety Association (USA).
b) Received its first sponsorship. This was for our International Road Safety News web section
and was generously provided by the FIA Foundation.
c) Had its executive director featured in a newspaper article, in the News and Star, in his native
June 1, 2005: The DSA executive director, Eddie Wren, was invited to appear on a TV news item about ‘How Can We Reduce the Numbers of Teenage Auto Accidents?’ (WIVB, Buffalo)
March 29, 2005: Twenty-two new events have been added to our International Road Safety Conferences page, in respect of both 2005 and 2006.
March 22, 2005: Even the United Nations (UNECE) see us as being sufficiently important to be included on their road safety links web page. Click here to see a list of key links to DSA, on our Comments Page.
March 9, 2005: It is always pleasing to get requests for information from unexpected quarters, and this time it was from the Myth Busters television series, on the Discovery Channel, where researchers had read our article: Death by Cell Phone.
We have put Myth Busters in contact with the relevant international researchers and look forward to their program!
February, 2005: Two or three times a year, we seem doomed to suffer from staff shortages, and a large slice of February was one such occasion. Two of us were away simultaneously, but as one small part of this problem involved our exec. director having a highly rewarding trip to the press days at the Chicago International Auto Show, to discuss safety topics with various exhibitors, we can’t complain too much! None-the-less, we apologize for reduced coverage on some aspects of the DSA website, particularly the International Road Safety News page.
January 10, 2005: Following our executive director being interviewed by MSN, for an article that subsequently appeared on the MSN Money page on January 7, it came as no surprise that our site hits went up significantly. The good news for DSA is that following an understandable drop in website hits, over the Christmas and New Year period, the subsequent hit-rate benefited not only from the MSN link but also from the fact that we used some of the quieter, festive period to do an experimental re-structuring of the meta tags on some of our web pages. The exciting result is that in just the first 21 hours of today we have received over 30,000 website hits.
Given that we have had to rely on our own, non-professional skills (or total lack of skills!) to build the DSA website, this must surely prove that content is more important than a website simply looking good. But, of course, we certainly can’t justify spending money on website designers; safety promotion and similar priorities dictate otherwise.
December 30, 2004: Wow! The year has thundered past and if this can be “confessions time” I fully admit that this page, like some of our other pages, has not been updated over the months as much or as often as we would have liked.
In terms of successes and recognitions, this year has been excellent. In addition to the CARSP “Best International Traffic Safety Website” award, and becoming the first and so far only North American signatory to the European Road Safety Charter, Drive and Stay Alive has been mentioned or cited in newspapers across the USA and websites around the world.
I was also delighted to be a guest on Knight Time, a Pennsylvania radio show especially for truck drivers, and as recently as yesterday I was interviewed for a new article on safe driving, for the MSN website.
Where do we go in 2005? Well, we are hoping to generate much more financial support so that we can not only get our life-saving road safety messages to more people in more countries but also to allow us to develop specific road safety programs for young drivers here in America, based on our huge wealth of “best practice” knowledge.
If you or your company can help with either of these aims — feel free to specify which — or if you know someone who might be able to help, please do contact us now.
In the meanwhile, we wish each and every one of our readers a safe, healthy and happy New Year.
Eddie Wren, Executive Director, Drive and Stay Alive, Inc.
September 20, 2004: After a disjointed month, with staff shortages, we have had a pleasing reward for our efforts today with a new record of 15,409 hits in the last 24 hours. Even Saturdays and Sundays — understandably our quietest days — are seeing over 8,000 hits a day.
July 25, 2004: We have now completed a proper ‘site map’ of the DSA website. It may always be reached via the home page, and we hope that it will make it somewhat easier for you to navigate around the 400+ pages on this site.
July 9, 2004: Two copies of the European Road Safety Charter arrived by mail today and now await signing before one is returned to Brussels. This may take a short while, however, as we are hoping to arrange a suitable signing ceremony with invited guests and/or co-signatories.
Drive and Stay Alive, Inc., is currently the only organization in all of North America to become a signatory to the Charter but this has occurred not because of any emphasis on Europe, by DSA, but because of the unique global coverage of our ‘Road Safety in the News’ web page.
July 2, 2004: We’ve had another busy month with the international news web page: 222 articles from 48 countries (of which yet another 6 were new: Bermuda, Iraq, Mauritius, Palau, Samoa, and the US Virgin Islands). This brings our totals for the first six months of 2004 to 1137 articles from 93 different countries. That’s an average of 189 articles from 45 countries, each month.
Articles from the USA are the most numerous, at over 41% of all items posted; the UK is second, with 10%; Australia is third, with 4%; Canada is fourth with 3.5%: and India is fifth, with 3%.
June 1, 2004: Our incoming e-mail, this morning, contained an unexpected and delightful piece of news:
The Canadian Association of Road Safety Professionals (CARSP) has selected the Drive and Stay Alive website for its monthly international traffic safety website award. Our three most recent predecessors for this award were:
The World Health Organisation (WHO) for World Health Day — Road Safety, March 2004
The German Federal Highway Research Institute (BASt), April 2004
The Intelligent Vehicle Initiative (US Department Of Transport), May 2004
It is a great honour and very humbling to be included among such company.
At the end of last week, we also received official notification that DSA is being made a signatory of the European Road Safety Charter — despite us being an American-based organization — and this is in connection with our international Road Safety in the News page.
These recognitions — together with the RoadSafe item, below — are all exciting ways for us to celebrate the imminent first birthday of the Drive and Stay Alive website.
And, as a postscript, the website is now regularly exceeding 8,000 hits per day.
It’s Nice to Get a Mention, Ourselves!
May 20, 2004: The May edition of RoadSafe News, issued in London, carried the following article:
INTERNATIONAL NEWS FROM DRIVE AND STAY ALIVE
Drive and Stay Alive, Inc. ( www.driveandstayalive.com/ ), is a not-for-profit organisation in the USA. Based loosely on the founder’s own experience, in England, as a traffic officer in the Cumbria Constabulary’s excellent, though financially short-lived “Motorcycle Safety Squad”, Drive and Stay Alive is building a programme for senior schools in Western New York to educate young drivers more broadly about the dangers they face.
It is on a global basis, however, that DSA believes it has something to offer everyone with an interest in road safety, anywhere in the world, and that is via its international “Road Safety In The News” web page: www.driveandstayalive.com/info%20section/news/aa_road-safety-in-the-news_current.htm
The page is intended to let us all see what is happening elsewhere — what succeeds and what fails — and it is hoped that apart from generating a feeling of camaraderie among road safety practitioners it will also provide us all with ideas and an occasional smile at something more light-hearted.
April 29, 2004: Staff shortages, through Easter, slowed down our work on the website for a while but since then we have added several items and amendments retrospectively.
Despite those staff shortages, however, we were still able to undertake our largest individual website project to date (and it may well remain the largest for years to come) because we assembled what can only be described as a very large web page devoted to the WHO’s World Health Day, 2004, which was, in turn — of course — devoted to road safety. You canread it here.
Today also provided another popularity “milestone” — our first day with over 7,000 hits. Our monthly average is now comfortably over 150,000.
March 9, 2004: We still have a long way to go before we match some of the bigger players online, but today was another pleasing little milestone along the route. On an average day, recently, we have been getting about 3,600 hits but we had never broken the 4,000 barrier before. You might imagine how pleased we were when we checked at 10pm this evening and found that we’d not only gone past 4,000 since the start of the day but we had comfortably cruised right through to 5,600 hits.
To our delight, the catalyst for this major upsurge has clearly proven to be our international ‘Highway Safety In The News‘ page; our contribution to a broader understanding of the similarity of problems but the diversity of solutions, around the world.
March 2, 2004: A late-evening glance through our “hits” log for today confirmed a pleasing trend. Drive And Stay Alive is attracting an ever growing number of readers from around the world. In the last 22 hours alone we have had visitors from the following countries (in the order that they came to the website):
There were probably more countries than this because the list only represents those URLs with an alphabetical suffix indicative of the country, whereas the majority of URLs are solely numeric and we have neither the time nor the program to check the origins of those, too.
Anyway, for such a new website to be getting over thirty countries and over four thousand hits in one day pleases us. More importantly, though — wherever you are from — please do let us know what you like and what you dislike about our site, so that we can keep it interesting for you. Contact Us.
February 29, 2004: The second full month of our extended, world highway safety news is complete, with over 160 news items from 26 countries, in February alone, and over 300 items from 40 countries since January 1.
This news service that we are now providing appears to be the broadest based international road safety news facility available anywhere and among the larger organizations which have started visiting it are the World Bank, the World Health Organisation, the United Nations, and the European Union Conference of Ministers of Transport. But even though it is very gratifying for DSA to have these “big guns” visiting our site the road safety news pages are intended for everyone, from professional organizations down to individual drivers who wish to know how else they can help protect themselves on today’s busy roads. For the latest news, click here.
February 8, 2004: The autoshow (“motor show”) season is in full swing, here in the N.E. states, and like everyone else we love going to see the latest offerings even though it is disruptive to our workload. But even though we’ve only been to one show so far, good things came out of it and we later got to test drive the pre-production Volvo S40 T5, 2004-5 model, which won’t be available in the USA until later in the year, and it is an excellent little car in all respects. Click here to read our test drive report.
We are also delighted to feature a new writer on this website. Alan Sidorov is a former racing driver who, unlike many of that ilk, truly does convert his considerable skills into street-wise highway safety advice. What we hope will be just his first article for us — Braking Requires Decisive Footwork — is now online.
January 25, 2004: Who said Sunday was a day of rest?! It tends to be the day, here, where we try to do website improvements and catch up on jobs not done during the preceding week.
Today, we have significantly enhanced the research papers section and, by chance, that led us into adding an entirely new page for serving, highway/traffic patrol police officers (and anyone interested in their work).
We hope that if either of these two pages is of interest to you, it meets your needs, but whether or not it actually does, please let us know; feedback is always of great importance to us.
January 23, 2004: Well…. It had to come! We are a not-for-profit organization and depend on donations and grants simply to keep us going in what we believe to be a vital task, so we now have a page that is a request for donations — please think in terms of even just one young life saved, and give generously to help us achieve that aim and more.
Some people ask us why we don’t just cover the USA, on this website, but our aim is to spread information about “best practice” in road safety, to everyone. All countries can benefit from the knowledge-base in other nations. But in one hour, between noon and 1pm, today, even we had a pleasant surprise: Apart from the USA and the UK, we had website hits from no less than seven other countries — Guatemala and Poland (both of which were new for us), Hong Kong, Belgium, the Netherlands, Japan, and our old friends, Canada. We are now almost up to 100,000 hits a month and have had hits (many regular) from over 40 countries. Thank you all, wherever you are, for that support.
Added to this, our occasional but repeat visitors now include the government of the European Union, the United Nations, and — less often — WHO, the World Health Organisation.
January 14, 2004: An extended Christmas vacation brought the site to a virtual standstill, in terms of new data, and of course this coincided with a significant drop in the daily number of website hits, but the latter situation swiftly disappeared and this site — still only six months old — is now getting about 3,000 hits per day.
We have also now added a search engine to the site. It is currently only located on two pages (including the home page) while we assess its functionality, but so far it has flawlessly taken us to all 246 pages (i.e. separate subjects) that we currently have on the site. Please let us know if you encounter any problems.
December 10, 2003: We have been busy, busy, busy — as always — but today revealed a wonderful little accolade for this website. Naturally, we monitor site hits and we are pleased and grateful to all of the individuals and organizations who have given us a link from their sites. Little did we think, though, that we had already been put onto the links page of the European Conference of Ministers of Transport (OECD), under the heading of ‘Road Traffic and Safety (USA)’. We are honored and gratified, but we know that there is still a great deal of work to be done until this site fully reaches the standard that we require of it.
November 30, 2003: Again, much has been added to the site during the last two weeks but of particular importance to our cause is the fact that, starting on December 4th, we are adding a media section so that we can now start to issue our own press releases.
November 14, 2003: Over the past two weeks, much has been added to the site — most noticeably in the police vehicles and police driving sections but also in several other areas. Also, as of today, “Drive and Stay Alive” gains an “Inc.” on its title as it has now been incorporated as a Not-For-Profit company. The site has also been selected by Yahoo to appear on their News Front Page > Full Coverage > Business > Automobiles & Driving page, in the Related Web Sites section.
November 1, 2003: As just one of many items in our Road Safety News section, we can now report that for drivers to use hand-held cell phones has now been made illegal in Great Britain. Read the full announcement.
October 31, 2003: So-called new ideas, in driving, have often been dismissed long ago as unsafe. This is undoubtedly the case with the modern but ill-advised trend of advising people to set their wing mirrors wider, to give a view further from the car. Read why this is a very bad idea.
October 30, 2003: The editor of the DSA website attended the National Transportation Safety Board’s forum on the Standards of Driver Education, Washington DC. Writing up the whole event is taking some time but the first part is now online. Click here to view it.
October 14, 2003: The Australians apparently lead the world in child car-seat design and safety. We have added an excellent article, showing what to look for in the best child seats, in our Children In The Car section.
October 9, 2003: This week, much work has been done on the Police section of the website, and the pages on speed-related matters have also been enhanced (though in both cases they are still far from complete). And last but not least, a new ‘history of road safety’ section has been added, in the ‘Info Section’.
October 3, 2003: Many more links have been added to various parts of this site. Many news items and articles have also been added, and — as an important document for all road safety professionals — the UK Department for Transport ‘Road Safety Policy Update, September 2003’ has been posted in the ‘Road Safety Initiatives’ section. Click here to view it.
September 30, 2003: The RoSPA Policy Paper has now been added to our comprehensive index on drink-driving issues. Click here to go to that index.
September 29, 2003: A new ‘Safety Equipment‘ section has been added in the ‘Information Section’ (also see navigation bar, below).
September 24, 2003: Our test drive of the Ford Windstar minivan (an ‘MPV’ in British terminology) made the vehicle live up to its name as we drove through nasty side-winds in the aftermath of Hurricane Isabelle. Read our report here.
September 24, 2003: Normal service has been resumed! Relevant sections of the website will once more be updated as promptly as possible and existing pages will be enhanced whenever time permits.
August 21, 2003: As the editor will be away, on business in Europe, during late August and early September, this website will not be updated at the usual rate during that time. In the meanwhile, please do surf through “Articles and Topics” and the “Info Section” though as there is a great deal of information available there.
August 19, 2003: As the fourth generation of the 5-Series BMW reaches the end of its production line to make way for the beautiful new fifth generation model, we take a look back with a review of the model that has given seven years of excellent service. Click here for the report from our test drive.
August 16, 2003: Updating the Road Safety News section each week can always be an eye-opener, but to find a report that a woman has been convicted of writing notes against the steering wheel, while talking on her cell phone, while driving down the turnpike, while nursing her unrestrained baby on a nursing pillow on her lap leaves even experienced traffic enforcement officers speechless. (Source: the Beacon Journal at Ohio.com)
August 13, 2003: Tidying up the design of several pages was the monotonous bit, but the unnecessary death of 16-year-old Michael Appleby has been added (as a full article, courtesy of the Chattanoogan.com) and is a “must read” for teenagers.
August 12, 2003: This website is now almost two months old and many hundreds of hours of research and work have gone into its preparation so far, but even though we aren’t completely satisfied with the design of the site, the majority of the effort has gone into adding reliable content rather than simply trying to make the site look pretty!
Within the past few days, the main enhancements to the site have included:
Re-design and simplification of the Home Page and the index pages for ‘Articles and Topics,’ and the ‘Information Section’
A major update to our own list of drunk driving Blood Alcohol Concentration Limits Worldwide(now 73 countries)
Additions to the ‘Events‘ section, in order to include motor shows and auto shows, worldwide
The new navigation bar (below) is still a long way from being ‘state of the art,’ but as it improves it will eventually replace the side-panel indexes on all pages.
A Police Anecdotes section has been opened and we have also created a Writers Wantedpage
Please bear with us as the site is continually developed and expanded, and do Contact Us if you find any design flaws, broken hyperlinks or anything else — good or bad — that you wish to comment on.