On the Road with ASIRT Fall 2020.......................... Fall 2020  
Dear ASIRT Friends and Colleagues,

A little more than two months ago, ASIRT commemorated its 25th year. For the past 25 years, ASIRT’s staff, Board of Directors and volunteers have worked tirelessly on initiatives with the United Nations, World Health Organization, governments, NGOs, corporations, the study abroad community and the health and tourism sectors at home and abroad to reduce the number of deaths and injuries on the roads of the world. 

The date also marked 25 years since my 25 year-old son Aron was killed in the bus crash that forever wrenched him from our lives (view the video). I was struck by the painful realization that Aron has been gone from us for as many years as he was with us; we have mourned his absence, for as long as we rejoiced in his wise, compassionate and radiant presence. 

With the establishment of ASIRT came the promise to Aron that we would impel action to create a safer, more protective world in which future Arons would be able to realize their magnificent young dreams. 

While our promise has not yet been fulfilled and road crashes remain the single greatest killer worldwide of young people ages five to twenty-nine, we were uplifted by a landmark event that took place on Tuesday, September 8th. The United Nations passed a resolution declaring the years 2021 to 2030 a new Decade of Action for Road Safety. The declaration affirms the UN’s commitment to work vigorously to implement a new, ambitious agenda to halve road crash deaths by 2030. 

My darling, Aron, so much remains to be done. However, with this resolution comes renewed hope and the realization that we are now one step closer to fulfilling our promise to you. 

Thank you to all of you whose support and hard work propels ASIRT forward in its efforts.


Rochelle Sobel
ASIRT Founder and President
Save the Date! ASIRT Annual Gala Tuesday, December 1, 7:30 pm ET
What will cars and roads of the future look like? How will the dramatic changes impact our daily lives?

Join us for ASIRT's Virtual Gala, "Roads of Tomorrow," when experts and visionaries will address these intriguing questions.
Details at asirt.org/gala as they become available.
ASIRT Lite Series Welcomed Travelers Abroad
Hundreds of virtual travelers joined ASIRT on tours of Hawaii, Uganda and Kenya as part of three online sessions in June and August during the ASIRT Lite Summer Travel Series. "Tour guides" introduced viewers to an array of fascinating facts and cultural details particular to each destination. To view the recordings and access the Q&A for Kenya and other information about the segments, go to asirt.org/summerseries.Tonya Mohn's Forbes article about the series highlights the importance of "know before you go."
ASIRT Addresses Concerns with Local Pedestrian Safety Initiative
This summer, ASIRT, with the assistance of intern Isaac Nadaner, constructed, distributed and collated a neighborhood Pedestrian Safety Questionnaire. Respondents residing in a targeted area were asked to identify specific locations they deemed particularly hazardous as they walked in their neighborhoods for pleasure or exercise or to get to and from houses of worship. Three locations were cited most often as being pedestrian “black spots” or areas of particular concern. ASIRT is developing an advocacy plan and contacting local government officials and members of the Vision Zero organization and will vigorously promote government action to undertake interventions to remediate the situation.
Road Safety Included in House of Representatives FY2021 Appropriations Bill
The U.S. Congress included language in the FY21 Appropriations Bill that encourages the State Department to improve the collection of data of deaths of American citizens abroad and to publicize that information. ASIRT has been fighting for this for a long time and, while funding for this is not included in the Bill at this time, we do consider this an advocacy success, which was led by Rep. Alcee Hastings (D-FL), co-chair of the Global Road Safety Caucus. Appropriations language below:

United States citizens’ deaths overseas.—Section 204(c) of Public Law 107–228, the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2003, mandates that, to the maximum extent practicable, the Department of State collect and make available on the Department’s Bureau of Consular Affairs website information with respect to each United States citizen who dies in a foreign country from a non-natural cause. To improve data collection, the Department shall include the age and gender of the deceased and, when available, specific details on the site and circumstances of the incident. 
Updated Country Reports Available
Recently updated Road Safety Reviews include Austria, Burundi, Chad, Cameroon, Luxembourg, Malaysia, Mozambique and Slovenia. While travel is limited, ASIRT members continue to travel and work in these and other countries.

ASIRT members can log in to select reports. If you are interested in a country that is not listed, contact ASIRT so that we can add it to our queue of requests for new and updated reports.
Focus On: ASIRT Board Member Hernan Rosenberg
With more than 35 years of experience in private and international public sectors spanning all continents, Hernan Rosenberg specializes in strategic planning, international development and facilitation of dialogue between the social and economic sectors. He has pioneered important changes in technical cooperation delivery and in the evaluation of programs. Learn more.
Congratulations to...
ASIRT's Global Researcher and Writer and award-winning journalist and novelist Debra Bokur on the release of her first novel, The Fire Thief. Set in Hawaii, The Fire Thief is a murder mystery that follows the path of Detective Kali Mahoe, the granddaughter of one of Hawaii's most respected spiritual leaders, as she uses reason and superstition to uncover the motive and find the killer. Debra is scheduled to release The Bone Field, the second book in the series, in May 2021.
ASIRT Interns Collaborate Virtually for a Successful Summer
For the first time, ASIRT implemented a virtual internship program. High school and college students Maya Einhorn, Barak Eisenman, Seth Eisenstein, Isaac Nadaner, Jeremy Sobel, Julia Sobel, Aron Unger and Sam Unger worked independently and collaboratively throughout the summer on a variety of road safety issues. Read about their important contributions and contact asirt@asirt.org for information about upcoming internship opportunities.
Road Safety in the News

As schools reopen, parents are grappling with how to prevent their kids from contracting the coronavirus. It’s an urgent issue, but parents see another risk: getting infected traveling to and from the classroom. Review the guidelines.

Front Crash Prevention Reduces Large Truck Rear-End Crashes (Forbes)
New research highlights that large trucks with forward collision warning and automatic emergency braking systems are much less likely to rear-end another vehicle, Equipping them with the technology could eliminate more than two out of five of those crashes. Read about the study.

The lack of urgency around the problem of pedestrian deaths may, in part, reflect the relatively low status of those being killed. Walking deaths fall disproportionately on those who are poor, black and brown, elderly, disabled, low-income, or some combination thereof—marginalized people with fewer political resources to demand reforms. Learn more.
ASIRT's Mailing Address
Please update your annual designations to reflect ASIRT's current address: 11769 Gainsborough Road, Potomac, Maryland 20854. Phone: 240-249-0100. Fax: 301-329-8487. Please mail checks to the above address or make payments at asirt.org/donate.
Support ASIRT's mission to improve road safety. Make a contribution today.