Why Are There More Car Accidents in the Summer?
When people think about dangerous times to drive, they typically think of things like blizzards, ice storms, and heavy downpours, not a warm, sunny summer day. But in reality, rates of car accidents tend to actually increase during the summer months. According to data from the NHTSA, the numbers of fatalities caused by car crashes between the months of June and October in 2016 were higher than they were in months like January and February. Even though you don’t have ice and snow to deal with in the summer, there are still lots of other factors that can make driving more dangerous.
One of the key reasons why car accident rates tend to go up in the summer is the fact that young drivers have more time to be out on the roads. This factor alone is why AAA calls the time between Memorial Day and Labor Day the 100 Deadliest Days. According to AAA, a total of about 3,500 people have been killed in car crashes involving teen drivers during this timeframe over the past five years. Not only do teen drivers have less experience behind the wheel, they’re more likely to engage in risky behaviors like distracted driving, speeding, and impaired driving.
Between holidays, graduation parties, and other types of summer parties, many people have more opportunities to drink alcohol before getting back behind the wheel. Rates of car crashes involving alcohol tend to go up during the summer months, particularly around holiday weekends. And with recreational marijuana now being legal in Michigan and in some other states, the more likely it is for drivers to be impaired by other substances aside from alcohol.
More Cyclists & Pedestrians
Summer is also the peak time of year for people to be out and about on motorcycles, regular bikes, or just walking around. When the weather is cold, many drivers get out of the habit of watching for those traveling on two wheels or on two feet. In 2015, 60% of motorcycle accident fatalities and 51% of bicycle accident fatalities occurred between the months of May and September.
After a long, cold winter, lots of people are eager to go out and enjoy the nice weather, whether it’s by taking a road trip or just checking out some events closer to home. There are always lots of things going on during the summer months, so there are many different reasons why you might encounter some extra traffic on the road. Road construction projects can also add to traffic congestion, either by slowing traffic down around construction zones or by increasing traffic in nearby areas as people look for ways to avoid construction.
Car accidents at any time of year are deeply upsetting to deal with, particularly when injuries are involved. If you’ve been injured in a car accident, don’t hesitate to contact a car accident lawyer. It’s only natural to have a lot of questions about your case and a lawyer will be able to help answer any questions you have and help you understand what legal options are available to you. At Goodwin & Scieszka, we’re highly experienced in working with the victims of Michigan car accidents. Contact us today for help with your case.