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Motor Vehicle Accidents Archives

AAA links daylight saving time with heightened crash risk

With daylight saving time comes the loss of one hour of sleep. While most people in New York may only feel inconvenienced by it, they should know that the resulting drowsiness can make a difference on the road. Everyone needs at least seven hours of rest. Drivers who miss one to two hours of rest in the previous 24 hours will nearly double their chances of a car accident.

Prescription opioids may be linked to serious car crashes

Many New York residents worry about the impact of the opioid epidemic, from growing rates of addiction to the threat of deadly overdoses. One area where opiates may also have an impact on safety is on the roadway. A study examined fatal two-car accidents across the country and discovered that drivers held responsible for causing these crashes were almost twice as likely to have prescription opiate medications in their system at the time as the driver of the other vehicle.

Factors in car accidents in New York

There are a several common factors in New York car accidents. Human error is behind many, especially distracted driving. This has become a widespread issue with more and more drivers using their smartphones behind the wheel. Virtually anything, though, from talking to passengers to eating, can become a distraction. Another factor is driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

Distracted driving continues to be a roadway threat

While widespread public campaigns have informed New York drivers of the dangers of using their smartphones behind the wheel, distraction continues to pose a serious threat on the roads. The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety released a report comparing surveys observing drivers in 2014 and 2018 for signs of distraction while driving or stopped at red lights. They found that the overall rate of distracted driving appears to be roughly the same four years apart, but the type of distractions may vary considerably. In addition, mobile phones aren't the only issue diverting drivers' eyes and minds from the roads ahead.

New Yorkers could be victims of drowsy rideshare drivers

Commuters who rely on services like Uber and Lyft may want to be aware that rideshare drivers typically work as independent contractors. The companies do have regulations in place that demand drivers take six-hour break periods after a certain amount of driving time. However, the American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) has pointed out that many of these drivers work other jobs that could lead to added fatigue.

Dump truck crashes on the rise

People in New York may have particular concerns about truck accidents, especially since the occupants of passenger cars and other smaller vehicles are far more likely to be seriously injured in case of a crash. Statistics also show that crashes involving large commercial trucks like dump trucks and concrete delivery vehicles are on an upswing. While insurers have raised insurance premiums for commercial truck companies, this has had little effect on the escalating number of accidents. Various initiatives to reduce the risk of driver fatigue also aim to improve roadway safety.

Tips for safe and responsible driving in the winter

Drivers in New York will face many challenges when winter brings wet, snowy and icy road conditions. That's why concerned motorists should have a mechanic check vehicle components such as the brakes, ignition, battery and spark plugs. They could also have the mechanic check antifreeze levels and tire pressure.

Current HOS rules blamed for rise in trucking deaths

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported 4,761 large-truck fatalities in 2017, marking a 9 percent increase from 2016 and a 29-year high. At the same time, motor vehicle crash deaths in general went down 2 percent. Many in the trucking industry in New York and across the U.S. believe that several factors are involved in this trend, the first having to do with federal hours-of-service guidelines.

Reduce the risk of accidental death

Young people in New York and across the United States may face unexpected dangers from the most mundane sources. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the leading cause of death for Americans age 44 and under is accidental injury. In 2016, 61,749 people lost their lives due to unintentional incidents, almost twice the number of lives taken by cancer and heart disease combined. Most of these accidental deaths stemmed from unintentional poisonings and motor vehicle crashes.

Teen drivers more dangerous without adult supervision

The Foundation for Traffic Safety, an organization run by AAA, has released the results of research in advance of National Teen Driver Safety Week. Drivers in New York should be aware that the risk of fatalities for teen drivers is lower when they are driving with more experienced drivers in the vehicle. Specifically, when a teen driver has only teenage passengers in the car, the rate of fatalities for all people in an accident is 51 percent higher.

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