Daylight Savings Time Ending, Accidents Up?
As we come into fall and get ready to switch off of Daylight Savings time on Sunday, November 2nd, we at Stillman and Friedland Attorneys want to remind you to drive safely in the upcoming months.
Did you know?
According to the Federal Highway Administration, half of all accidents occur during nighttime hours. However, only one-quarter of all driving is done at night, so what this means is that you are twice as likely to have an accident while driving at night! As we approach shorter days, you will often be driving home at the end of a work day in the dark, and in addition to night vision problems, you may be tired and less alert as well.
The Department of Transportation’s NHTSA statistics show that nighttime accidents involve three times as many fatalities as daytime accidents.
The FHWA also notes:
“A large proportion of nighttime crashes are single-vehicle, run-off-the-road crashes, suggesting that a driver's inability to recognize delineation, guidance, or warning information may be a contributing factor. “
In addition to fatigue, sometimes this is also a result of worn or faded signs, which are no longer reflective.
Another driving danger is bad weather. In Tennessee, on average, the second and third most rainy and snowy months are November and December. Bad road conditions may obscure traffic signs, and road markings, so you may be surprised by sudden curves, or unable to stay in your lane, or have to brake suddenly at stops. Obviously slippery road conditions make driving and stopping even more difficult.
Trucks, another danger
According to a research study, when trucks do not have adequate reflective markings, Mmost fatal car-into-truck accidents occur during hours of darkness, pointing to a potential lack of nighttime truck conspicuity."
This is in addition to the special risks we have detailed regarding trucks and road safety. It’s also important to remember that long-haul trucks are more likely to be on the road during nighttime hours than the average passenger vehicle, and that truck drivers have the same nighttime fatigue issues as non-commercial drivers. Remember that when trucks hit cars, the results are often fatal, so please review our previous blog on how to avoid truck collisions.
The Good News
Better lighting and retro reflective signs and truck marking have improved road safety over the last 20 years, as have the use of seatbelts and child restraints.
What can you do to prevent accidents?
- Always wear seat belts and use appropriate car seats for every child in your car.
- If you are tired, get off the road! Stop for a short nap, and have a coffee before getting back behind the wheel.
- Drive Alert! Keep your focus on the road, not the phone. Never drink and drive.
- Review our safety tips for avoiding truck and auto accidents, and be especially careful in slippery conditions and low visibility.
- Be a good Tennessee Volunteer and help keep others safe! Report hazardous conditions to the authorities such as streaming water, missing signs, accidents, objects on the road etc.
Remember that we at Stillman & Friedland are here for you in all seasons and all weather. When accidents happen you can turn to us for professional advice to help you make the best recovery.