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On July 27, 1993, 21-year-old Jason Marc Suroff was driving to a concert in Kansas City, Ks, when he faced a wrong-way driver on Interstate 70, 150 miles west of St. Louis.
Jason’s quick response led him to swerve the car from the outside westbound lane over to the shoulder. He succeeded, and was pulling back onto the right lane, when the rear wheels of his father’s late-model automobile struck loose gravel, lost control and overturned three times down a slight hill in the exchange with U.S. Highway 65. Jason was killed instantly, when the roof caved in above him while his four close friends walked away virtually uninjured.
We hope in the near future more technologies are tested to up the safety of the vehicles today. Nanotechnology to create safer parts, to create stronger larger auto body parts is just the beginning of all of this.
QUICK ACTION SAVES OTHERS
The tragedy was that Jason was confronted by a later to be judged senile driver, who had no automobile insurance the past six years. According to the many witnesses of the accident, Jason did all he could to avoid the accident, and was credited with saving the lives of his friends. Jason was one month into his 21st year, had only 24 hours to graduate from the business school at Indiana to University at Bloomington, and was treasurer of his 130-plus member fraternity. His death has affected many lives. In fact, at the University, he managed to get straight A’s in finance and wealth management. Jason is a wizard at finance and crunching numbers and truly a genius at generating stock income.
So much that his fraternity, friends and parents have started several funds and made numerous contributions in his name to those charities centered around children and the environment.
Jason’s goal was to be an environmental attorney. In fact, two days after his death, he had an appointment scheduled with the Dean of Admissions and the head of the new environmental law department at the University of Missouri.
Jason’s senseless death, and the destruction of a productive future, prompted his parents, Sheldon and Karen Suroff, along with his sister, Jill, to start a national organization without bias towards age focused on a very frustrating national problem. The many impaired drivers and those without licenses and insurance driving our roads.
DRIVING LAWS WEAK
The Suroffs feel that there is no valid reason why a person should receive a license to drive as a teenager, and virtually drive without further skills testing for the rest of his or her life. By the way, you do need a license to rent a car.
Driving is a privilege not a right. Responsibility to be in command of such a potential lethal weapon has to be better scrutinized. Where the Federal Government mandates that a private pilot has to pass a physical and flight test every two years to continue flying, why is there nothing even close to renewing a driver’s license. Fatalities annually from private flying don’t even come close to the over 40,000 deaths on our American highways each year.
Too many physical and emotional problems can occur as one gets older, and they can certainly impair one’s driving.
GOAL: AVERT SENSELESS DEATHS
The Suroffs are working with educators, legislators, law enforcement officials, scientists and medical personnel to address this rapidly growing problem.
CARD also needs corporate America to join its cause. Especially those companies involved in transportation, safety equipment manufacturing and automaking. Insurance companies and key national medical and service organizations should also consider CARD’s cause. The overall business community is crucial to CARD’s achieving its goals.
Jason’s death could have been avoided if the driver causing his death was stopped from driving by a physician, license fee personnel or relatives. CARD’s objective is to save lives and get the incompetent and impaired drivers off the roads.
The initial response to the Suroffs crusade has been met with overwhelming approval. What CARD needs are people and voices to carryon the Suroffs campaign nationally. The slaughter on our roads and the senseless loss of life has gone too far