2021 Shaping up to be the Most Dangerous Year on the Road
November 18, 2021

It’s 2021, and you might think that means you are safer on the road than ever. After all, the technology that goes into our vehicles has never been better. Many newer models have lane change assist, automatic emergency braking, and some brands even have semi-autonomous settings. If cars can almost drive themselves, we should be entering a new age of road safety.

Sadly that simply isn’t the case. In fact, quite the opposite is true. 2020 had the highest number of fatal crashes of any year since 2007, and according to the numbers, 2021 is shaping up to be even worse.

How is this happening? Did the pandemic make Americans forget how to drive?

We often attribute car crashes exclusively to human error, but this recent surge in fatal crashes is causing experts at places like the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) to rethink that assessment. A sudden lack of driver competence does not serve as an adequate explanation for this rise in deadly accidents.

The exact reasons remain unclear, but things like bigger cars with greater horsepower and an increase in highway-like roads may be some of the main culprits behind this troubling development.

 Americans are buying more SUVs than ever, and simple physics tells us that the larger the vehicle involved in the crash, the more damage that will occur. Our vehicles now also have far more horsepower than they once did. We can go faster than ever before, and accidents at high speeds have far more potential to turn deadly.

Force equals mass times acceleration, and in 2021 our vehicles now tend to have more mass and acceleration, which means that accidents have a lot more force involved, which could be why more crashes are resulting in fatalities.

But the vehicles are not the only problem. Some argue that road design may also be to blame. Highways are wide and flat to allow people to drive at greater speeds. Many roads, however, take this highway-like design and apply it to more local areas, inadvertently encouraging drivers to pick up the pace in areas where there are far more obstacles and potential hazards.

If you are involved in an accident that is not your fault you are entitled to compensation through an insurance claim. A car accident attorney can help you navigate that claim and file a lawsuit if needed. That insurance claim will help you get compensation for your vehicle, injuries, and pain & suffering.

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