Distracted driving has always been an issue as people taking their attention off of the road for whatever reason can be dangerous, but the use of smart phones appears to have made it more common. It seems that distracted driving has caused the previous decline in traffic fatalities to reverse itself.
Many Pennsylvania drivers fear that if they fail to break and hit another vehicle in front of them, they will automatically be responsible for the accident. Determining liability in these types of situations is often more nuanced, and it can be helpful for drivers to understand the many factors to consider when negligence is determined.
It may be several more years before autonomous cars become commonplace in Pennsylvania and throughout the country, but once they are, accidents are expected to decrease. The causes of the crashes that do occur are also expected to change, and this will lead to major changes in the auto insurance industry as well.
A report from the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety indicates that some of the most dangerous drivers on the roads of Pennsylvania and around the country are between 19- and 24-years old. A survey of a number of age groups found that 88.4 percent of people in this category admitted to texting while driving, speeding or running red lights during the previous month. The survey found that a smaller number, 69.3 percent, of those between the ages of 16 and 18 admitted to the same potentially dangerous behaviors.
Pennsylvania drivers concerned with road safety should be aware that, according to new estimates released by the National Safety Council, motor vehicle deaths in the United States in 2016 exceeded 40,000 for the first time since 2007. This increase is attributed to more drivers being on the road due to the healthy economy and inexpensive gasoline prices.
Throughout Pennsylvania and the rest of the U.S., distracted driving is becoming a bigger safety issue. In fact, data from the U.S. Department of Transportation reveals that about 1.5 million American motorists are texting while driving at any given daylight moment. Road safety organizations and federal agencies have called on large electronics manufacturers to develop features that could make their devices more difficult for drivers to use. Class-action litigation filed against Apple has revealed that these features are already available but have not been offered to the public.
As smartphones continue to grow in popularity, more motorists in Pennsylvania and across the country could be tempted to read or send text messages while behind the wheel. While the companies behind popular social media platforms like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter have been criticized for not taking action to curb this type of dangerous behavior, the makers of the popular messaging application Snapchat have been accused by road safety advocates of actually encouraging reckless driving.
Pennsylvania residents might have been warned about the dangers of drunk driving or texting behind the wheel, but many people may not hear much about driving while fatigued. The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety issued a report on Dec 6. that illustrates how unsafe driving while tired could be. Compared to those who get at least seven hours of sleep in a 24-hour period, those who sleep for five or six hours are twice as likely to crash.
Pennsylvania residents might like to know about a Thanksgiving day crash that killed three people. The authorities said that a 22-year-old Pittsburgh man with a suspended license caused the accident and was traveling at more than 100 mph. The man faces charges for vehicular homicide, aggravated assault with a vehicle and criminal homicide.
The millions of Pennsylvania residents who plan to travel over the upcoming Thanksgiving Day weekend may wish to be particularly vigilant as they venture out onto the roads. Data released by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration indicate that road traffic accident fatalities surge during holiday periods, and Thanksgiving is often the deadliest of all. During the Thanksgiving period in 2012, there were 764 fatal and about 50,000 non-fatal traffic accidents, and the data suggests that many of these crashes and deaths could have been prevented.