Articles Posted in Car Accidents

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According to a new report by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, the number of wrong-way driving accidents in the U.S. increased by almost 35% in recent years.  Most wrong way driving accidents are the result of drunk driving, but they can also be caused by mistakes by older drivers or drowsy drivers.  The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety recently issued a list of guidelines for state transportation agencies to prevent these kinds of accidents.

Wrong-way driving accidents are some of the most devastating accidents  that occur on Atlanta roads.   These accidents typically involve head-on collisions that occur at high speeds that result in fatalities. Driving under the influence of alcohol is a primary cause of wrong-way driving accidents.  Drunk driving – specifically, driving while excessively intoxicated – is strongly linked to wrong-way driving. Excessive alcohol intoxication or a blood alcohol concentration level that is between 0.8 and .15%, or close to double the legally permitted blood alcohol concentration level in Georgia, is often linked to these devastating driving errors.

The AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety advises that state transportation agencies increase their implementation of DUI checkpoints or sobriety checkpoints.  The Foundation also advises states like Georgia to strengthen laws requiring the installation of ignition interlock devices on the vehicles of motorists who are convicted of drunk driving.  An ignition interlock device determines the level of intoxication of the motorist, and activates to prevent the motorist from starting the car if those intoxication levels are above a pre-set limit.  Many states, including Georgia, require the installation of ignition interlock devices in the cars of motorists who are convicted of repeat DUI offenses. Several safety advocates have called for the application of these laws to all drunk driving offenders, even first – time offenders. A stringent application of the law would significantly reduce the number of intoxicated motorists on our streets.

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With students across Georgia gearing up to have fun over spring break, it’s important for parents and colleges to understand the very high incidence of binge drinking during this season, and the resultant elevated risks of being involved in drunk driving accidents.

Binge drinking is a contributor to several drunk driving accidents every year.  Binge drinking is the consumption of too many alcoholic beverages in too short a period of time. This is quick and excessive drinking, and the number of drinks consumed can range from 4 drinks during a 2-hour span in the case of a woman, to 5 drinks or more in the same period of time in the case of a man. High intensity drinking, the incidence of which is also very high among college students during spring break, is the consumption of double this amount or more. The chances of blood alcohol levels rising very quickly with such speedy drinking are extremely high.

During a typical drinking session, a person might eat or pace his drinking, slowing down the absorption of alcohol in the blood. However, when young adults binge drink, that same kind of pacing does not happen. The result is a quicker absorption of alcohol into the blood stream and faster intoxication.  Couple this excessive drinking with the kind of reckless and uninhibited behaviour that typically occurs when young adults are with friends of the same age, and you have a potent situation with a high risk of a drunk driving accident. Several studies show that teenagers and young adults are at a much higher risk for binge drinking, compared to older, mature adults.

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A new study by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association finds that a combination of strategies, including stronger laws against the use of cell phones while driving, as well as stringent enforcement of these laws could significantly help reduce the risk of distracted driving accidents.

Many states, including Georgia, have been struggling with containing the distracted driving epidemic. The use of cell phones behind the wheel is rampant,  despite laws that specifically prohibit such practices. Several studies have indicated that most motorists admit to having used a cell phone while driving for texting or for having a conversation. It is only a minority of motorists that will actually turn off cell phones while driving.

Cell phone use has become an integral part of the driving experience, and for many people, the car has become an extension of the workplace.  This makes it tempting for motorists to reach out for their phones to answer a text message, read and respond to an email, or answer a phone call.  All of these are extremely distracting activities, and seriously increase the person’s risk of being involved in an accident.

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Women have a higher risk of being severely injured and suffering certain types of injuries in in car accidents compared to men. The prevalent theory is that this is the result of physiological differences between men and women.  A new study spotlights other more likely factors for this disparity.

The study was conducted by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, and the results were released recently. Men are overall much more likely to be involved in fatal accidents than women. However, women are more likely to suffer fatal injuries. According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, women are between 20 and 28% more likely to sustain fatal injuries in accidents compared to men. They are also approximately 37 to 73% more likely to suffer serious injuries in an accident compared to male drivers, even after adjusting for factors like speed.

According to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, women are more likely to suffer certain types of injuries in accidents because of the types of vehicles that they are likely to drive. The circumstances surrounding the accident could also have a lot to do with the kind of injuries that females suffer. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety researchers found that in a front-impact accident, women had a 3 times higher risk of experiencing moderate injuries like concussions.  The risk of suffering a traumatic brain injury or lung injuries was twice as high as for males.

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Teens account for a greater proportion of all speeding-related accident deaths in the United States, compared to all other age groups. Those disturbing facts come from a new report by the Governor’s Highway Safety Association, which analyzed data between 2015 and 2019.

The report found that teen motorists, as well as their passengers between the ages of 16 and 19, accounted for a much higher proportion of accident deaths that were caused by speeding, with 43% of deaths occurring in this age group. In all other age groups, speeding accounted for approximately 30% of all deaths during the same time period.

According to the report, there were a total of 4,930 fatalities in accidents that were caused by speeding, between 2015 and 2019.  During this time, there were 15,510 teen driver and passenger accident deaths, and more than 5,200 of those occurred in accidents that were caused by speeding.

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Traffic safety advocates are calling on the new Biden administration to prioritize road safety, especially the vision of zero traffic deaths by the year 2050.

Road accidents can have a tremendous human cost. The new administration has a personal link to the kind of tragedy and pain that result from a car accident. The President lost his first wife and daughter in a tragic car accident in 1972.

Road to Zero is the nation’s largest coalition of traffic safety organizations. The coalition along with a number of other organizations, including Vision Zero Network, and Toward Zero Deaths, has called on the Biden administration to prioritize the saving of American lives in traffic accidents and the strengthening of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. Road to Zero and the other organizations are partnering with a single goal in mind – to reduce the number of preventable traffic accident fatalities to zero by the year 2050. The new Secretary-designate of Transportation as already begun meeting with lawmakers. There is hope that the new administration will prioritize road safety even as it grapples with other more pressing issues including the pandemic.

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Preliminary figures show that there was a significant increase in traffic accident facilities in Georgia in 2020, despite the pandemic and stay-at-home orders. In fact, according to the study, the numbers may be the highest on record since 2007.

The preliminary figures released by the Georgia Governor’s office of Highway Safety showed that there were 1,615 traffic accident deaths in the state of Georgia in 2020.  That was the highest total on record since 2007, when there were 1,641 facilities recorded. It was also a significant increase from the figures in 2019 when the state recorded a total of 1,491 deaths in traffic accidents.

It’s important to remember that these are preliminary figures, and the total numbers are very likely to increase as the agency continues to confirm the number of traffic accident deaths across the state last year. The majority of accident deaths in 2020 occurred on state roads and highways.

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CBD products have become extremely popular in recent years, as more states, including Georgia, have loosened restrictions on the sale of products containing cannabis for the treatment of certain conditions including chronic pain, anxiety and other conditions.  The use of CBD products increased exponentially this year by people trying to cope with the COVID-19 pandemic.

There may be an increased risk of being involved in car accidents when you are on some types of products containing cannabis. New research indicates that CBD products that contain THC, could significantly increase a person’s risk of being involved in an accident.

There has been concern about the effect of cannabis on a person’s driving abilities. Driving under the influence of drugs can significantly impair a person’s driving skills and increase the risks of being involved in an accident. However, as the use of products containing marijuana increases around Georgia, it is also important for us to learn more about how the use of these products affects a person’s driving abilities.

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A new report finds that many county-maintained roads in Georgia have been chronically undermaintained and in poor shape, increasing the risk of accidents for motorists travelling on these roads.

That information was published in a recent report by transportation research non-profit group, TRIP. The group recently released a report titled Moving Georgia Forward: Road and Bridge Conditions, Traffic Safety, Travel Trends and Funding Needs in the Atlanta region. The group conducted a survey of a number of counties in the state starting from 2019 and ending in 2020, specifically focusing on the condition of the transportation network of the state. The survey found that as many as 22% of roads in Georgia that are maintained by counties, are in substandard condition.

Not only are these roads in poor condition, but there also does not seem to be any hurry to get these roads fixed any time soon. Funding shortages will only ensure that many of these roads will continue to be deficient well into 2021 and beyond. At the current funding rate, only approximately 12% of the total number of miles of roads that are in need of repair work, including resurfacing, will be fixed in 2020. Overall, only 52% of the total amount of funding that is required to fix the entire network of county-maintained roads, is available for use. Hundreds of thousands of people use these county roads on a regular basis, and when these roads are poorly maintained and unsafe, they pose a serious risk of accidents to motorists.

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The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is kick-starting its annual seat belt enforcement campaign, even as a bill that would require all occupants of a car in Georgia to be buckled in remains pending.

The current bill pending in the Senate would require that all occupants of a vehicle, including any adults in the back seat, remain buckled while the car is in motion.  This bill was introduced in 2019, and has a lot of support from lawmakers who believe that it is important for all occupants in a car to receive equal protection against injuries and the possible risk of death in an accident.  If this bill is ultimately be passed and becomes law, Georgia will join the list of states that now require all motorists and passengers to be buckled in while driving, without exception.

Currently, the law in Georgia requires only front seat passengers to wear seat belts.  The law applies only to minor back seat passengers below the age of 17. Adult passengers in the back seat are exempt from the law.

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