July 5, 2022
Why Are There More Car Accidents in the Summer?
Summer is here, ushering in sunny days, warm temperatures, and seasonal fun from shore to shore. For many Americans, summer is prime vacation season – visiting friends and loved ones, traveling to distant places, or embarking on new adventures.
Unfortunately, summer also holds the grim distinction of being the season with the highest number of car accidents and a period known as the “100 Deadliest Days,” from June through August, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
A 24-year car accident study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reports that:
- Summer sees 29 percent more fatalities in car crashes than in winter, the second highest season for fatal accidents.
- The highest number of summer car accidents involve teenage drivers
- Nearly 300 teenagers per year die in summer car crashes, approximately 26 percent more than any other season
- Summertime car collisions and wrecks incur billions of dollars in damages each year
Driving during winter is the most dangerous time to be on the road, however, several factors make summer driving much riskier. Before embarking on your road trip of a lifetime, learn what potential risks you may encounter along the way, such as:
- Teen drivers: Once school is over for the year, teenagers across the country take to the roads with much more frequency, embracing the freedom of spending summer with friends and fun activities. Unfortunately, teenagers are not as experienced in defensive driving skills and still relatively inexperienced as a whole, both increasing the risk of causing an accident, particularly involving pedestrians or motorcyclists. According to the NHSTA, the majority of the 30 percent higher summer fatalities involve a teenage driver.
- Vacationers: Americans love a good road trip and the vast majority take vacation time during the summer, embracing better weather, and embarking on treks to the beach, mountains, popular tourist locations, historical sites, and much more. But increased traffic and unfamiliar roads raise the risk of potential accidents.
- Impaired drivers: The warm and sunny weather of summer brings about many fun activities such as music shows, festivals, parties, street fairs, boating trips, and hundreds of other entertaining activities. Such occasions frequently involve people consuming alcohol while in attendance, which leads to drunk driving for many. Summer outranks every other season with 28 percent of drunk driving-related fatalities, making it also the deadliest of seasons. Alcohol slows reaction times, impairs vision, affects metal processing ability, and causes drowsiness, all a deadly combination.
- Car failure: Summer heat can wreak havoc on your vehicle. The tires, for instance, can blow when exposed to the extreme heat of asphalt over a long period, and can result in severe and fatal accidents.
- Motorcyclists: Better weather means more motorcyclists and bicyclists will take to the roads than any other season, which increases the risk of accidents, particularly for them. Motorcycles and bikes are difficult for other drivers to see at times, such as when changing lanes, which frequently causes them to be struck and suffer severe injuries or death.
- Weather: Summer is prone to sudden thunderstorms or rain showers, making the roads slick and increasing the risk of car crashes. In addition to heavy rain that can be hard to see through, severe storm clouds often create darkness akin to nighttime, making it extremely difficult to see other cars around you.
- Road work: The majority of construction and repair on U.S roadways takes place during summer months, causing delays, route detours, alternative locations of enter and exit ramps, lane reduction and more, which can cause much confusion for some drivers. Additionally, there are more crews along the roadways at great risk of being struck by a passing car.
- Road rage: While angry and destructive drivers are a risk at any point during the year, summer tends to see a spike in road rage behavior, thought to be the result of high temperatures, dehydration, and the driver’s quick temper.
What Should I Do If I am in a Car Accident?
Though no one expects to be in one, especially on vacation, car accidents can happen anywhere and at any time during the summer. If you have been involved in a car crash, the following steps should be taken:
- Report: Call the police and report the accident, requesting emergency medical care for any injured occupants
- Seek medical treatment: If injuries are severe, first responders will provide the necessary care. If you feel that you are not seriously injured, you should still seek medical evaluation within the first 48 hours following the accident. Many internal injuries may not display symptoms for hours or days, and some can have serious consequences if left untreated. Plus, you will need the doctor’s evaluation for insurance claims.
- Document the scene: Take photographs or video of the scene, including damage to the cars, road and weather conditions, traffic signs and signals, and anything else that may have contributed to the accident.
- Witness statements: Ask all witnesses for their name, contact information, and a statement if they are willing to give one. If you are not comfortable doing so, the police will obtain all witness statements for the police report, and you can request a copy.
- Maintain records: Following the accident, keep copies of any written communication, reports, medical evaluation and treatment, medication, hospital bills, police reports, repair bills, and any other important documentation related to the accident. This information will be extremely crucial when filing your insurance claim.
- Hire an attorney: Car accident cases can be quite complex, especially in cases where the at-fault driver refuses to accept fault or if it is unclear who the at-fault driver is. Insurance companies do not like having to pay expenses and will most likely refute your claims if you decide to handle your claim on your own. Hiring an experienced personal injury attorney with a successful history of handling insurance companies is your best opportunity to receive compensation for your injuries, medical expenses, lost wages, damages, and more for which you are entitled.
King of Prussia Car Accident Attorneys at Anthony C. Gagliano III, P.C. Represent Clients Injured in Summer Car Crashes and Negligent Drivers
Being in a car accident while embarking on a summer vacation or outing is not what most people envision when hitting the road. If you have been involved in a car accident due to another driver’s negligence, the experienced King of Prussia car accident lawyers at Anthony C. Gagliano III, P.C. are here for you. Call us today at 267-861-7100 or contact us online to schedule a free consultation. Located in Philadelphia, we serve clients throughout Montgomery County, Delaware County and Norristown, Pennsylvania.