For the entirety of 2020, there were fewer people on Michigan roads and fewer crashes. The reason for this was clear: the COVID-19 pandemic shelter-at-home mandates.
What is troubling, and more difficult to discern, is that the crashes that did occur were deadlier. More than 1000 people died in traffic crashes in Michigan last year. The Michigan Department of Transportation reports that is the highest number of traffic fatalities since 2007.
Experts who have weighed in on this cite a number of reasons for this high number of deadly vehicle crashes:
- The wide open, mostly empty roads, encourages speeding. Crashes at higher speeds are more dangerous and result in more serious injuries and death.
- Impairment. Drug and alcohol use increased during the pandemic. It is speculated that more crashes were due to impaired drivers
- Distracted driving. Less people on the road gives drivers a false sense of security. Drivers mistakenly think that it’s safe to check their phones and pay less attention to traffic signals.
If you or a loved one suffered an injury in an automobile accident due to someone else’s negligence, contact our office for a free consultation.