How Has the Pandemic Affected Traffic Accident Trends?
This spring, the streets were eerily quiet as large parts of the country were under stay-at-home orders. Some journalists even hypothesized that new habits that emerged in response to the pandemic might be the key to reducing carbon emissions. Less traffic means fewer traffic accidents, right? Not always. 2020 was the year in which the truth was often the opposite of what made the most sense. In 2020, unlike in any other year before it, riding the bus to work was a more dangerous activity than going on a motorcycle ride for fun. Dealing with the financial consequences of a car accident is always stressful and disruptive, but even more so during the COVID-19 pandemic, when so many people’s employment circumstances hang in the balance and when simply going to work carries the risk of serious illness. If you got injured in a car accident in 2020 and have made recovering from it financially your resolution for 2021, contact a South Carolina car accident attorney.
Going Nowhere at 100 Miles Per Hour
A report published in the New York Times described how the COVID-19 pandemic affected traffic patterns nationwide. In the spring, as schools and businesses closed, and employers in many industries instructed their employees to work from home, there was less traffic and fewer accidents. At first, it looked like a more dramatic version of what has happened in previous recessions; people were driving less, because no one misses the rush hour commute, and gas is expensive. With time, though, traffic increased, as did risky driving behaviors. Going for a drive is one of the few things you can do for fun without the risk of coming into contact with maskless people.
The report noted the following trends with regard to traffic accidents during the COVID-19 pandemic:
- More crashes resulted from people driving at excessive speeds on major highways. Urban sections of the interstate are usually so crowded during commuting times that it is not possible to drive long distances at extreme speeds, but during the pandemic, there was nothing to stop people from speeding down the interstate at all hours.
- In rural and urban areas, more speeding tickets were for speeds in excess of 100 miles per hour. In Georgia, just across the border from South Carolina, police issued more tickets for speeding at 100 miles per hour and above in 2020 than in any other year in history.
- There were more motorcycle accidents, a disproportionate number of them involving people without motorcycle licenses. It appears that, during the pandemic, many people took up motorcycle riding as a new hobby, and 2020 was not the time to wait in line at the DMV for a motorcycle license.
Contact Us Today for Help
If you suffered serious injuries in a car accident in 2020, you still have time to recover damages for it, and a Columbia car accident lawyer can help. Contact The Stanley Law Group for help with your case.