The hazards of winter driving are well known, but the reality is that summer is the most dangerous time of year to drive. The number of traffic accidents are higher between Memorial Day and Labor Day than during the rest of the year. July and August are in fact the two deadliest months on the road, according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety. When you travel this summer, prepare yourself for the additional hazards you may encounter:
Summer often brings an increase in construction work on roadways. Construction sites often cause traffic to slow down and become more congested, bringing an increased risk of accidents. Do your best to account for work zones in your travel plans, either avoiding them or giving yourself extra time to reach your destination. When you do have to drive in a construction zone, use extra caution. Stay alert, slow down to posted speeds and pay attention to warning signs. If lanes are closed in a construction zone, be sure to merge early into the correct lane.
The summer months are the most popular time for road trips and family vacations, meaning there are more people on the road than during other times of the year. More people means a greater chance for an accident. Traffic jams can lead to impatient, frustrated drivers who may drive unsafely to reach their destination quicker. Keep safe in heavy traffic by being patient, avoiding distractions and being considerate to other drivers.
More Motorcycles and Bicycles
The number of motorcycles on the road has increased over 45 percent since 2004, and the number of motorcyclists has doubled. Bicycling has also become more popular, with a 64 percent increase in cyclists traveling to work between 2000 and 2012. Warm weather brings more motorcyclists and bicyclists on the road, adding another safety consideration for motorists. Motorcycles and bicycles can be difficult to see and can easily slip into your blind spot. During the summer, look twice before turning or changing lanes. Give bicyclists and motorcyclists plenty of space and increase your following distance to avoid an accident.
Rainfall can make roads slippery and lead to visibility issues and flash flooding. Drive slowly when roads are wet and leave extra braking distance. Be especially careful during the first ten minutes of rainfall. The buildup of dust, oil and diesel make roads even more slippery before it’s washed away. If a road has been dry for more than three weeks, it may stay slippery for several days. Hydroplaning is another danger of driving in the rain. When the road is wet, lower your speed by one third (i.e., if the speed limit is 45 miles per hour, drive at 30 miles per hour or slower) and maintain a following distance of five seconds.
Do You Need a South Carolina Car Accident Lawyer?
If you or a loved one has been injured in a car accident, you now face medical expenses, car repair costs and the stress of dealing with insurance companies who don’t want to give you a fair settlement. The experienced personal injury attorneys at the Law Firm of F. Craig Wilkerson can help you negotiate with insurance companies to ensure you get the compensation you need. Contact us online to schedule a free case evaluation or call us at:
- 803-324-7200 (Rock Hill attorneys)
- 803-289-7202 (Lancaster attorneys)
- 803-396-5200 (Fort Mill attorneys)