Liberty Mutual Insurance has conducted a Multi-National Distracted Driving Study that shows how widespread the trend of distracted driving is among different age groups. Wisconsin residents should be aware that anything that takes a driver's attention from the road is a distraction. It can be a visual, aural or cognitive distraction.
Drivers in Wisconsin should know that distracted driving can be a deadly form of negligence. It resulted in 3,166 car crash fatalities in 2017, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, and it continues to be a widespread trend. To protect themselves and others, drivers should first understand the most distracting activities.
Around 42 million drivers in the U.S. are 65 or older, and the number continues to grow. Wisconsin residents probably know that senior drivers can struggle to drive safely due to the effects of aging. While the overall number of traffic fatalities has gone down since 2009, it has been increasing among senior citizens. In 2017, these older drivers made up 14% of all drivers in fatal crashes.
Hundreds of car accidents occur in Wisconsin and across the U.S. every day. However, according to a new report by Allstate Insurance, some areas of the country have more accident-prone drivers than others.
Drivers in Wisconsin may be interested to know that the 2018 preliminary report from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is out. While there has been some improvement in one area, there are lingering safety concerns for other areas. Overall, the number of motor vehicle accident deaths went down about 1% from 37,133 in 2017 to 36,750 in 2018.
Professionals who study car safety ratings say that many vehicles Wisconsin drivers and others own may not be as safe as advertised. This is because crash tests don't consider how smaller vehicles fare in head-on collisions with larger vehicles. Vehicles are rated by the National Highway and Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) on a scale of 1 to 5. Those who receive the highest score are generally thought to be the safest on the roads.
While it can be a time for celebration when teens get their license, there is a very real risk that goes along with it. Wisconsin drivers should know that the National Institutes for Health ran a study comparing teen driving behavior before obtaining their license and after. It turns out that the chances that teens get in a crash or near-miss go up eight times in the first three months of having a license compared to the three months before obtaining it.
Distracted driving is a major threat to roadway safety in Wisconsin and across the nation. It's linked to thousands of fatal or catastrophic accidents every year. In many states, distraction is the leading cause of motor vehicle collisions. Concern about distracted driving has gone up in recent years along with the behavior in question, especially as smartphones have become nearly ubiquitous. Drivers stuck in traffic, at red lights or even on monotonous stretches of roads may find it tempting to pick up their phones.
The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that in 2017, more than 10,800 people died in auto accidents that were caused by drunk driving. Starting in the early 2020s, Wisconsin drivers will be able to purchase Volvos with safety features that help prevent accidents caused by drunk and distracted driving. The company says it will begin rolling out the features in early 2020. Starting in 2020, the company's cars will not allow speeds higher than 112 miles per hour.
Wisconsin residents and others celebrated World Sleep Day on March 15. To highlight the importance of not driving while tired, Ford created a special sleep suit. The garment allowed individuals to see what the microsleeps felt like that a driver can experience without even realizing it. Although microsleeps only last for up to 10 seconds, they can make it harder to operate a motor vehicle safely.