Most drivers, over 80 percent, are under the assumption that winter driving is more dangerous than summer driving, according to a survey conducted by the Center for Excellence in Rural Safety at the University of Minnesota.
On the contrary, Charlotte car accident lawyers know that summertime brings more motorists to the highways and city streets for family vacations, holiday barbecues, trips to the beach, street festivals, and other warm-weather events. More vehicles traveling on roadways can only mean an increased risk of summertime car accidents in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, Hickory or elsewhere in the state.
Most drivers, 79 percent, responded that they feel safe on two-lane highways in rural areas which often leads to more dangerous driving behaviors during the summer months. Of those who responded, 38 percent feel relaxed on rural highways.
Drivers who feel safe and relaxed while driving are more likely to entertain risky behaviors like speeding, using a cell phone and drinking and eating while driving, which can lead to a high risk of injury for other motorists. When asked why they feel safer in rural areas, 51 percent responded because there is less to worry about and 31 percent responded that they feel more comfortable in the area and the driver knew the area better.
According to an article in Reader’s Digest, there are a number of summer driving hazards that motorists may want to try to avoid because they can be quite costly. The first of the summer dangers, hitting a wild animal while driving, is quite common, not to mention dangerous. State Farm Insurance reported an estimated 2.3 million collisions between July 1, 2008 and June 30, 2010 due to a vehicle hitting a deer. Motorists who want to reduce the risk of hitting an animal should drive with their high beams on and be particularly careful during early morning hours or at dusk. Strapping yourself in can also reduce the risk of serious injury in these types of crashes.
Summertime also brings the risk of severe storms passing through the area. In some cases, severe rain and thunderstorms can add an element of surprise and be quite dangerous if motorists don’t change their driving behavior in certain driving conditions. If severe weather strikes while you are on the roadway, it is recommended that motorists should allow plenty of space between vehicles, reduce speed, pull off to the side of the road, clean your vehicles windows and windshield both inside and out, inspect all vehicle lights (hazard, brake and turn signal) to make sure they are working properly and use your headlights in poor visibility.
A third summer hazard is driving drowsy. Not only can warm weather make you drowsy but so can long road trips or driving late at night. Motorists are reminded to pull over at a rest stop if they get drowsy. A recent study by AAA Foundation indicated that 2 out of 5 drivers have fallen asleep at the wheel and 10 percent of drivers have done so in the last year.
Drivers may tend to keep a watchful eye for other motorists throughout the year but pedestrians, bicyclists and motorcyclists are much more common on roadways during warmer weather and can be considered a summertime hazard. Motorists can avoid hitting bikers and walkers by knowing they are present and using a little extra caution at intersections or crossings.
The last of the summertime hazards to consider is speeding. Speeding is a contributing factor in approximately 33 percent of fatal crashes throughout the year and is always a concern. The omission of snow and ice on roadways doesn’t give motorists the green light to speed even though most feel it is safe to do so. As motorists sneak in the last few trips of the summer, be reminded of these summertime hazards in order to reduce the risk of serious injury in a North Carolina car accident.
If you have been injured in a car accident in Greensboro, Statesville, Charlotte, Asheville or Winston-Salem, contact the car accident attorneys at the Lee Law Offices, P.A. for a free consultation to discuss your rights. Call 1-800-887-1965 today.
In-vehicle Gadgets, Bells and Whistles to Blame for Injuries Caused by Charlotte Car Accidents, North Carolina Personal Injury Lawyers Blog, July 14, 2011
Summer Days Most Deadly for Motorcyclists in Winston-Salem and Throughout North Carolina, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, July 11, 2011
Alcohol and Speeding to Blame for Many Charlotte Car Accidents, North Carolina Car Accident Lawyers Blog, June 23, 2011