The best way to conquer wrong-way crash fatalities is by educating drivers about this roadway hazard and the steps they should take in case they face a wrong-way driver. Wrong-way crashes happen when individuals drive their cars in the opposite direction of travel on either a highway or freeway, colliding with vehicles moving in the right direction. Data on the U.S. Department of Transportation shows that wrong-way crashes kill about 350 people every year.
Despite occurring less frequently, accounting for roughly 3% of all motor vehicle crashes, wrong-way crashes cause most of the fatalities associated with motor vehicle accidents. The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) reports that wrong-way crashes have a 12-27% higher fatality rate compared to all other kinds of collisions.
Tips for Conquering Wrong-Way Crashes
Always Anticipating Potential Hazards
Carefully inspecting the road ahead and preparing for potential dangers is a safe driving practice. Drivers shouldn’t just focus on their lane. Instead, they should look past the first few vehicles ahead and inspect the whole width of the highway. By embracing this driving practice, a driver can easily see a wrong-way driver in advance and take the necessary measures to avoid a possible crash. This could include pulling over or swerving out of the way.
Driving in the Right Lane
NTSB reports that the majority of wrong-way crashes occur in the lane nearest the median. This shows that wrong-way drivers use the left lane most of the time. Driving in the right lane, therefore, can reduce the odds of encountering a wrong-way driver.
Avoiding common distracted driving habits, including eating, operating a cellphone, or tuning the radio, can help drivers pay attention to the roadway. That way, they will spot wrong-way drivers on time and take the necessary measures to avoid a collision.
Calling Law Enforcement Officers
Immediately after avoiding a wrong-way driver, calling law enforcement officers to report the incident is a good idea. This call could be instrumental in saving the lives of other road users.
Most wrong-way head-on collisions cause catastrophic injuries and fatalities. This leads to costly medical expenses and emotional suffering. An accident lawyer can, however, help family members of the fatally injured party understand their rights, explore their options, and recover the highest compensation by filing a strong lawsuit against the liable party.