Memorial Day weekend marks the start of the summer, a season that traditionally sees a spike in the number of motorists hitting the roads. And while the summer season comes with better weather (than other seasons) and longer daylight hours – two factors that would seem to promote safer roadway travels, this season is also associated with a spike in fatal auto accidents, making it one of the most dangerous times to be on the roads.
That’s why some transportation safety officials have deemed the summer season to be the 100 Deadliest Days for drivers.1
Why Do Fatal Car Accidents Spike in Summer?
The primary reasons that deadly auto crashes tend to increase dramatically during the summer are that:
- The roads are packed with far more motorists – Heavier traffic during the summertime results not only from more drivers hitting the roads but also from other travelers – like motorcyclists, bicyclists, and pedestrians – sharing the roads with drivers. More people packed on the roads can complicate the driving conditions, increasing the chances of motorist mistakes, driver negligence, etc.
- Less experienced teen drivers are on the roads for longer periods of time – With school out in summer, teen motorists tend to be behind the wheel for much longer periods time, driving about 40 percent more during the summertime (than during the fall, winter and spring seasons).Additionally, during the summer, less experienced teen motorists are far more likely to be doing non-routine driving and to be driving with other teens in their vehicles, two factors that significantly increase the risk of auto crashes.
- Impaired driving increases during the summertime – Tragically, summer sees a jump in drunk driving, with the number of fatal drunk driving crashes doubling during this season.2
- The heat of the summer can increase the risk of vehicle equipment failures – Even when motorists are careful, sober and attentive, they can still face an elevated crash risk during the summertime because the heat of summer can negatively impact the performance of their vehicles.For instance, heat can expand the air in tires while damaging the exterior rubber, substantially increasing the risk of blowouts. And when vehicle equipment failures happen with motorists behind the wheel, it’s far more likely that control of the vehicle will be lost and that a crash will happen.
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Contact a Columbia SC Personal Injury Attorney at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. Attorneys at Law
If you have been injured in a traffic collision, contact a Columbia SC personal injury attorney at Chappell Smith & Arden, P.A. for clear answers about your rights and options, as well as effective legal advocacy moving forward. For well over two decades, we have been committed to protecting the rights of injured people and helping them succeed in their financial recovery.
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1: The phrasing “100 Deadliest Days” has been attributed to the AAA Foundation.
2: According to the NHTSA