Chances are you have spent a lot of time at home lately due to the coronavirus pandemic that is gripping the world. Lockdowns, quarantines, and other measures have reduced the number of people working and left many of our highways nearly empty.
One would think the reduction in traffic would result in fewer motor vehicle accidents. Curiously, many states around the country are actually seeing an uptick in accidents despite that decrease in traffic.
What Explains Increased Accidents?
It has long been known that most accidents take place close to home, which is where most drivers feel most comfortable and have the most experience navigating. In fact, one in three accidents takes place within a mile from home. It is assumed that the reason for this is that drivers let their guard down on familiar stretches of highway while applying more care and focus when driving in unfamiliar terrain. Anyone who has turned down the radio while searching for an unfamiliar home or business can relate.
A similar effect is at play in areas with reduced traffic due to COVID-19. Drivers are letting their guard down on sparsely populated roads and taking unnecessary risks such as rolling through stop signs and treating stop lights as mere suggestions. Without bumper-to-bumper traffic reducing speeds, drivers are zoning out and speeding 20-30 mph over the speed limit.
Never Underestimate The Negligence People Are Capable Of
We recommend that you drive more defensively than ever during this time of odd schedules and lockdowns. Your best bet is to never underestimate the ability of your neighbors and fellow drivers to act negligently. The life you save may be your own.