Advocates for Highway and Auto Safety is an alliance of consumer, medical, public health, and safety groups and insurance companies and agents working together to make America’s roads safer. Advocates’ mission is the adoption of federal and state laws, policies and programs that prevent motor vehicle crashes, save lives, reduce injuries, and contain costs.
History and Structure
Advocates was founded in 1989 by executives of a number of major property and casualty insurance companies and several prominent consumer and safety leaders. These two communities share virtually identical goals on highway and auto safety issues.
According to the federal government, each year motor vehicle crashes claim almost 33,000 lives, are responsible for millions of injuries, and impose a comprehensive cost to society of $836 billion in property loss, medical and emergency bills, productivity loss, lost quality of life, and other related costs. Advocates pursues policies and standards that will prevent and mitigate this public health problem.
Strategies and Activities
Advocates develops a program plan each year to identify opportunities and establish priorities to advance safety measures. Advocates’ staff proposes legislation, analyzes issues, conducts research, develops strategies, organizes coalitions, files technical comments on federal regulatory actions, interviews with the media, prepares issue fact sheets and other publications including the annual Roadmap Report of State Highway Safety Laws, and maintains an extensive database of grassroots activists interested in highway and auto safety issues. All members provide expertise, outreach to constituents, research and other assistance to help the organization achieve its goals. Advocates pursues a bipartisan strategy in Congress and in state legislatures working with elected officials and legislative leaders.
Advocates’ strengths are its single-minded dedication to the adoption of public policies that save lives, prevent injuries and reduce costs, and the diversity of membership support for its mission. Advocates plays a leadership role in developing legislative and regulatory policies, expanding public understanding of highway and auto safety issues and encouraging actions to reduce the human and economic costs of motor vehicle crashes.