With all of the terrible news surrounding the global pandemic, COVID-19, there are some bits of good news. All over the country, traffic volumes are lower, traffic accidents (and related injuries and fatalities) are down, gas prices have plummeted, and air pollution has dropped.
In fact, the traffic volume has decreased so significantly because people are staying home with the quarantine and stay-at-home orders, that a lot of car insurance companies are actually giving people checks.
Auto insurance companies are giving 15 percent credit, 20 percent credit, or even more in the wake of the slowdown of traffic volumes and traffic-related accidents.
Traffic volumes are down
Across the USA, passenger travel has decreased by 30-60% each week compared to normal travel numbers in the weeks since social distancing orders began in mid-March 2020. For the first time ever, according to INRIX (a traffic analytics firm), there was no traffic congestion across America.
However, commercial traffic (heavy trucks) has remained constant because trucking is an essential service and truck drivers are still busy taking much-needed supplies to stores for consumers.
It makes sense that if there are fewer cars on the road, the number of car accidents, truck accidents, motorcycle accidents, and even pedestrian accidents would hopefully decrease.
Travel declined for the 4th consecutive week, but passenger travel showed signs of stabilizing.
- 30-60% weekly percentage reduction in passenger travel in metropolitan areas and passenger travel by state.
Traffic accidents are down
Traffic accidents have decreased by about 50% in numerous cities with some areas reporting 75% fewer car crashes since March 20, 2020.
In South Carolina, traffic-related deaths are much lower than usual through April.
ABC4 News reports that in 2019 by the beginning of April, 232 traffic-related fatalities had occurred, and in 2020 by the same tie, the number was only 177. The number was already lower before the coronavirus began impacting traffic. But it does appear that the quarantine is helping to keep the number a lot lower than usual.
According to WIS News, as of May 5, 2019 The number was already lower before the coronavirus began impacting traffic. But it does appear that the quarantine is helping to keep the number a lot lower than usual.
Usually, in SC, our traffic deaths are worse than those of many other states. In 2018, we had 1037 deaths in SC due to motor vehicle accidents. Our fatality rate here in our state was almost twice that of the national fatality rate.
According to NHTSA in 2017 in the USA
- 6,452,000 traffic crashes
- 4,530,000 property damage only
- 1,889,000 injuries
- 34,247 fatalities
Safety is still important
The lower traffic is a blessing. But we can’t be cavalier about it or take our safety on the roads for granted. It’s still essential for drivers and passengers to follow the basic safety precautions and obey all traffic laws when riding in motor vehicles:
10 traffic accident prevention tips
- Slow down below the speed limit when there are hazardous or dangerous conditions.
- Wear a helmet when you ride a motorcycle to avoid serious head injuries.
- Don’t speed.
- Use your turn signals appropriately.
- Avoid texting and distracted driving.
- Give the right of way properly.
- Make sure your lights, signals, brakes, etc… are in good working condition.
- Practice defensive driving.
- Give tractor-trailer trucks space to make turns and to merge.
- Be aware of motorcycles, pedestrians, and bicyclists to avoid accidents. Try to share the roadways.
People still need accident injury lawyers
Even in these times of a global pandemic and social distancing, the number of car wrecks has still not dropped to zero. We are so thankful the number of accidents has decreased, at least temporarily. But we know there are still going to be people with personal injury cases who need help.
That’s why we are prepared to provide professional legal representation as a personal injury law firm for people who are injured—as well as for families of those who are tragically killed—in traffic accidents.
Are you looking for a personal injury lawyer near you in South Carolina?
We are personal injury attorneys who can help you if you were seriously injured in a car accident. At Burriss and Ridgeway, we would love to see if we can help you get compensation for pain and suffering, lost wages, medical bills, and other damages you deserve if you were in a car wreck.
We’d like to offer you a free consultation, which can usually be done online or by phone so that we can keep you and your family safe and abide by social distancing protocol.
Please contact us today!
We’d love to see if we can help you with your personal injury claim.
We have three offices conveniently located around the Midlands in Lexington, Orangeburg, and Columbia, SC. Check with us about virtual appointments, as well.
Real-Time Traffic Accident information through the SCDPS.GOV and SCDOT