As the COVID-19 pandemic spread across the country, fewer drivers were on the road, and the miles traveled decreased significantly. Although pandemic measures have drastically reduced driving, fatalities related to vehicle accidents surged sharply last year, surprising experts: 38,680 deaths on U.S. highways last year, the highest since 2007.
To understand the rise in car accidents, the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety carried out extensive research to see if the pandemic impacted the makeup of drivers on the road. It was shown that while most drivers curtailed their driving during the pandemic, a tiny percentage increased it. According to an early study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, people who continued to drive throughout the pandemic may have participated in dangerous behavior, including speeding, failing to wear seat belts, and driving while under the influence of alcohol or other substances.
This unfortunate trend is another example of how the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic has harmed people’s lives. People are dissatisfied and upset, and these emotions contribute to an upsurge in automobile collisions, as many drivers vent their frustrations on the open road. On empty roadways, drivers prefer to speed up, especially in areas regularly congested before the pandemic. Furthermore, drivers feel more at ease texting while driving with fewer cars on the road.
Many Americans have rediscovered hobbies such as walking, jogging, rollerblading, and bicycling due to the initial closure of restaurants, gyms, parks, and playgrounds. As a result of these activities, the number of pedestrians on the road has increased, putting many of them in danger of being injured in automobile accidents. So, now more than ever, it’s crucial for drivers to practice safe driving methods when behind the wheel.
Drivers should strive to stick to the established speed restrictions. Speeding is a major factor in the increasing number of fatal collisions due to the pandemic. To avoid automobile accidents, drivers should also avoid driving while inebriated, wear their seatbelts, and limit activities such as eating, drinking, applying cosmetics, or phone use. Passing through crosswalks, crossroads, and driving near playgrounds and schools should be done with caution. Keep an eye out for children as well!
If you’ve been a car accident victim during the pandemic, contact car accident attorneys to get proper representation and compensation for any injuries or pain sustained from the accident.