Most everyone looks forward to summer. The warmer weather, the longer days, the outdoor activities, the fun barbecues— what’s there not to like? And of course, teenagers are the number one fan of the summer season. How could they complain about getting some time off school?
Unfortunately, summer can also be the deadliest season for teens behind the wheel. Law enforcement has known this, and they are on high alert during this time. In fact, the period between Memorial Day weekend and Labor Day weekend is famously known as the “100 deadliest days” on the road.
It is important for all drivers to stay safe on the road, regardless of their age. Anyone can get into an auto accident, no matter how careful they are. Unfortunately, many people underestimate the dangers of summer driving. In this blog post, we will give you a brief overview of the 100 deadliest days on the road— and the contributing factors that you should be looking out for.
This may seem counterintuitive. After all, summer seems like it should provide the best driving conditions of any season. It certainly does not make for any particularly turbulent conditions as winter does. However, there are many different contributing factors that make these “100 deadliest days” so dangerous.
For one thing, these holiday periods put more teen drivers on the road. Such drivers do not have as much experience behind the wheel, and they are also statistically more likely to get into car accidents or engage in dangerous activities like distracted driving. This is especially true when taking into consideration the congested roads during a holiday season.
Furthermore, warmer weather may lead to an increase in road construction. This creates extra hazards for drivers, and inexperienced teenagers may find it difficult to navigate these hazards. They may also find it hard to deal with the increase of motorcyclists and bicyclists on the road. Cyclist-involved accidents can be among some of the worst vehicular collisions, making this even more dangerous. Finally, especially in states that suffer severe winter conditions like Colorado, drivers of all ages may fail to keep up proper car maintenance after the winter months. People are also much more likely to drink or use other substances during the holiday season, leading to an uptick in drunk and/or otherwise impaired drivers.
All of these factors can contribute to a dramatic increase in automobile accidents during the summer season. In fact, the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety has even confirmed that the summer and early autumn are two of the most dangerous seasons for American drivers to be on the road. On average, July and August were found to be the altogether deadliest months of the year for drivers. Together, both months brought forth an average daily death toll of 116 people all across the country.
As we have already established earlier in this blog post, teen drivers are statistically more likely to get into car accidents than older drivers. This is due primarily to the simple fact that they do not have as much experience behind the wheel as older drivers do. However, it is important not to underestimate how serious this problem is. On average, there is a total of 260 teenagers killed in car crashes each month during the summer. This is a dramatic 26% increase from all other months of the year. In fact, more than 1,050 people were killed in teen driver-involved crashes during the 100 deadliest days in 2016 alone.
The most important factor in preventing car accidents with teen drivers is teen education. If you are the parent of a teenager, it is your duty to ensure that they complete a full and comprehensive driver’s education program. You should also make sure they fully understand all the responsibilities that come with driving. Discourage them from nighttime driving and speeding, as those are two of the top factors in teen driver-involved accidents. You should also make sure they know not to engage in distracted driving, as this is the number one reason for teen driver-involved auto accidents.
Yet it is not just teenagers who are guilty of distracted driving. Most American drivers are. Studies show that 55% of drivers in the U.S., in fact, confess to checking social media while behind the wheel. Does this number seem high to you? Well, you should also realize that distracted driving goes beyond just “texting and driving.” Rather, distracted driving encompasses any activity that takes your attention from the road. Many times, people may feel as though summer is a carefree season that allows them to “loosen up a little.” In reality, no one should loosen up enough to take their full attention off the road.
Summertime is the perfect time for all the cyclists to come out on the road. The weather is nice and the feeling is right— what could really go wrong? The short answer: a lot. Many people, drivers and cyclists alike, are totally unaware of the proper precautions they should take to avoid a cyclist-involved collision. The number one step you can take to empower yourself in preventing one is to educate yourself. This means understanding the importance of checking blind spots, making yourself visible (as a cyclist), giving space to cyclists (as a driver), and more. Most cyclist-involved accidents, like most car accidents in general, are totally preventable. Do not allow yourself to become just another statistic.
Regardless of the season, if you or a loved one have recently been a victim of an automobile accident, we at Injury Victim Law may be able to help. Though we are a Colorado-based firm, our team of experts and investigators is ready and available to assist personal injury victims all across the country. Contact us today to schedule an initial consultation with one of our experienced nationwide personal injury attorneys. You should not have to pay for somebody else’s mistakes. Let us fight for you and get you the compensation you deserve.