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More Bad Drivers are Hitting the Highways

I’m David Holub, an attorney focusing on personal injury law in northwest Indiana.

Welcome to Personal Injury Primer, where we break down the law into simple terms, provide legal tips, and discuss personal injury law topics.

Today’s question comes from a friend who observed that driving behavior out on the highways is getting worse, and he asked if we have observed the same pattern as him.

For a time, when many businesses were having employees working remotely, the volume of traffic and the corresponding volume of crashes was way down. But even with higher gas prices, more people are driving today than in the past couple of years.

A recent survey conducted by the American Automobile Association (AAA) and shared with their members about the driver behavior exhibited before and during the pandemic was shocking. Those risky behaviors are responsible for an increase in auto-related accidents.

These are increases in behaviors above what those same people reported before the pandemic. (How AAA conducted this survey was not revealed. However, based on what other media outlets are also sharing, we feel that these statistics are likely accurate.)

  • Speeding 10+ mph over the speed limit on a residential street is up 51%
  • Reading a text while driving is up 50%
  • Running a red light on purpose is up 45% (yes, I said on purpose)
  • Aggressively changing lanes is up 43%
  • Not wearing a seatbelt is up 21%
  • Driving while alcohol-impaired is up 13%
  • Driving while high or using cannabis is up by 13%

Negligent and reckless driving top the list. Drivers are in a hurry.

Because they are in a hurry, speeding and running red lights is how they figure that they’ll make up time.

Unfortunately, poor driving behaviors were responsible for an estimated 39,000 people dying in auto accidents last year.

So why do we share these statistics? We share them to hopefully get you to think about your own behaviors while driving. An accident can change the course of someone’s life and end it in some cases.

Here are a few safety tips to keep in mind:

Buckle Up – seat belts do save lives.

Drive Sober – that means no alcohol or drugs

No Distractions – turn the cell phone off

Drive the Speed Limit – an accident is not worth trying to save a few minutes

Have A Level Head – stay calm and maintain safe driving practices

If you are injured by the negligence of another, you must consult with an attorney who has extensive trial litigation experience. If your case cannot be settled, your attorney must understand how to prepare your case for trial and how to win your case.

I hope you found this information helpful. If you are a victim of someone’s carelessness, substandard medical care, a product defect, work injury, or another personal injury, please call (219) 736-9700 with your questions. You can also learn more about us by visiting our website at DavidHolubLaw.com – while there, make sure you request a copy of our book “Fighting for Truth.”