In spite of people across the country spending more time at home due to the ongoing pandemic and government orders to quarantine in place, statistics have shown an increase in the number of fatal car accidents.
Greg Coleman Law discusses why, in spite of fewer cars being on the road, there have been more dangerous car crashes in 2020 and what steps you can take to help keep you and your loved ones safer on the roads
If you were injured in a car crash caused by another's reckless driving behavior, learn how our Knoxville car accident lawyers may be able to help. We offer complimentary initial consultations to help you learn about your potential legal options. There is no risk or obligation to you.
Reckless Driving Behavior Due to Emptier Roads
Prior to the outbreak of COVID-19, accidents were commonly attributed to people getting impatient with rush hour traffic, especially in stop and go situations. Additionally, anytime there is a heavier volume of vehicles on the road, drivers tend to go with the flow of traffic, sometimes to excessive speeds.
During the pandemic, however, the lighter traffic on the roads during the various levels of lock-downs in Tennessee and other states across the U.S. has made room for drivers to engage in riskier behavior behind the wheel. The emptier roads have led to more instances of excessive speeding, one of the biggest reasons for the increase in fatal car crashes.
Knox News reported that by March, Tennessee was already seeing 18.5 percent more fatal car accidents in the state for 2020 as in the previous year. These numbers are in spite of a 15.7 percent decrease in the number of vehicles on the road for that same time period.
Additional risk factors include people not bothering to fasten their seat belts before getting behind the wheel, as well as more drivers on the road exhibiting other types of dangerous driving behavior, including:
- Aggressive tailgating
- Failure to use lights or turn signals
- Late night driving
- Distracted driving
- Getting behind the wheel while impaired by drugs or alcohol
Other Contributing Factors
In addition to accidents that are caused by dangerous driving behavior, drivers may let their guard down when there is less traffic. This can lead to them being inattentive to other vehicles on the road, such as not noticing if another car is swerving erratically out of his or her lane.
Other factors may include:
- An increase in excessive speeding
- People driving and not wearing their seat belt
- More instances of reckless driving
Steps That May Help You Avoid an Accident
Buckling up, staying alert and driving defensively every time you get behind the wheel are three of the most important things you can do to help avoid accidents. However, there are other steps that can help to keep you, your passengers and others on the road safe as well, including:
- Frequently checking around your vehicle and in your mirrors to help anticipate unsafe situations: For instance, avoiding drivers who dodge in and out of lanes without signaling or watching for those who neglect to use headlights at night or in bad weather.
- Understanding the limits of your vehicle – and others: Important examples include following safe driving distance recommendations, increasing that distance in inclement weather and allowing yourself enough time to stop. It also means avoiding those tailgating drivers, including truckers, whenever possible.
- Skipping the fast lane: Staying in the middle lane or the slower lane if there are only two lanes can help you avoid some of the most impatient and reckless drivers
- Driving earlier in the day and avoid late night driving whenever possible: Statistics show that most accidents occur between midnight and 6:00 a.m. In part this is due to more drowsy or reckless drivers on the road, as well as a decreased ability to see at night.
Our Law Firm is Prepared to Provide Legal Help
Sometimes in spite of your best efforts, a negligent driver may make it impossible for you to avoid an accident. If this happens, having a qualified attorney on your side can help to ensure your best interests are protected. Our team of legal professionals have decades of experience, and we have recovered millions in compensation for the injured victims we have represented.
Contact our firm to learn more about your potential legal options. There is no obligation for an initial consultation, and if we take your case, there are also no upfront charges or attorney fees to pay. We do not collect our fees until the end of your case, and only if we obtain a recovery on your behalf.
Greg Coleman Law. Trusted legal help fighting for you. (865) 247-0080