Summertime in California allows increased opportunities to enjoy outdoor activities, due to warmer and clearer skies. Unfortunately, the pleasant weather during the summer months also results in a significant increase in traffic on city streets and highways. A summer car accident is not uncommon during the 3 months. There are approximately 3600 motor vehicle-related deaths every year in the month of July alone.
Why do more car accidents occur in the summer months? From vacations to summer gatherings, there are numerous reasons for the increased number of serious motor vehicle accidents. We explore these reasons and reveal what you should do if involved in a summer car accident.
Why Do More Car Accidents Occur in the Summer?
An increase in the number of drivers on the road also increases the likelihood that an individual will be involved in a motor vehicle accident. There are several reasons that there are increased number of drivers on the roadways during the summer months.
Reasons for Summertime Traffic Include:
- School Breaks
- Vacations/Road trips
- Increase in Motorcyclists on Road
- Congestion from Roadwork
The increased number of teenage and young adult drivers on the road is a significant factor in this increase in motor vehicle collisions. Young adults are involved in nearly 8% of all traffic fatalities but only account for 5% of licensed drivers in the US.
Nearly 2000 young drivers, aged 15 to 20, die in motor vehicle crashes every year. These fatalities are a result of over 200,000 motor vehicle crashes involving young drivers. Young people are significantly more likely to be involved in an automobile accident than other age groups, due to inexperience and poor driving decisions.
Factors in Summertime Accidents
There are several additional factors that make roadways especially dangerous in the summertime.
Driving Under the Influence
Most people enjoy getting outside during the summer months. Common examples include trips to the lake, BBQs, and other outdoor gatherings. Unfortunately, alcohol consumption is also common at these outdoor gatherings. The number of drivers on the road under the influence of alcohol is higher during the summer months.
There are an increased number of roadway construction projects underway during the summer months. These construction zones result in higher congestion on roadways, debris, and additional hazards.
Summer days are longer and hotter creating the potential for an increase in cases of driver fatigue. Fatigued drivers may experience decreased reaction times, poor judgment, and/or other mistakes behind the wheel resulting in a higher risk of accidents.
Other Car Accident Factors Include:
- Distracted Driving (Electronics, Passengers, Etc.)
- Weather (Rainstorms, Flooding, Etc.)
- Increase Risk of Motor Vehicle Performance Issues
Safeguard yourself and your family by practicing safe driving habits, including using caution at intersections, leaving a distance between vehicles, and watching for road defects (potholes).
How to Prevent Summertime Car Crashes
There are several things that you can do to keep yourself and your family safe during your travels this summer.
Summer Driving Tips:
- Avoid driving during high traffic hours and on holiday weekends. Take extra time off to avoid driving home on Sundays when highway traffic is increased.
- Never drink and drive. Plan ahead for gathering by always designating a mature, sober driver that you can count on.
- Watch the road. Avoid all distractions. You will need to remain attentive to the road to watch for other less attentive drivers, including those who may be under the influence and teen drivers.
- Maintain all fluids inside your vehicle. Failure to maintain your vehicle could result in numerous mechanical issues, including overheating, breakdowns, and irreversible engine damage.
- Check tire pressure and get an oil change before heading out on the road. Be sure to keep an emergency roadside kit inside your vehicle, including jumper cables, drinking water, a flashlight, and a phone charger.
You should also leave children or pets in a hot vehicle. If you ever see a child or pet let unattended in a vehicle be sure to call 911.
James McKiernan Lawyers
Contact James McKiernan Lawyers today if you or a loved one is injured in a car accident this summer. Compensation may be due for medical bills, property damage, lost wages, and more.
James McKiernan Lawyers has helped clients throughout Central California receive over $300,000 in compensation. Reach out to James McKiernan today to discuss your case.