Rising gas prices seem to have a positive aspect. Researchers have discovered a direct correlation between the rising gas prices in the last few years and the reduction in traffic fatalities over the same period. They cite several possible reasons for the relationship between high prices and fewer accidents.
Reduced Driving Overall
The most obvious reason that high gas prices would cause fewer traffic fatalities is that people simply can’t afford to drive as much as they used to. With fewer people on the road, there are fewer opportunities for accidents to happen.
Driving patterns have also changed due to the price of fuel going up. People have begun to limit their driving to necessary trips, which means that they are driving less often at night or on the weekends. With less congested roads during these busy travel times, the drivers who are on the road have more opportunities to practice safe driving habits.
Teens and Elderly Driving Less
The two groups of people who have the highest risk for being involved in auto accidents are teenagers and the elderly. Both of these groups are in low income brackets, meaning they are likely to suffer the strongest impact from rising fuel prices.
This means that people who are very young and very old are being forced to leave their cars parked in their driveways more often. Removing riskier drivers from the roads will have an immediate impact on the number of accidents that occur.
Fuel Saving Tactics are Safe Driving Tactics
People are being careful about the way they drive while gasoline is more expensive. There are certain driving techniques that help conserve fuel so that a person needs to buy gasoline less often. These techniques are also key to safe driving.
Accelerating slowly, stopping at a gradual pace, taking turns carefully, and driving more slowly in general will increase a person’s gas mileage substantially. A side effect of following these gas conservation-driving techniques is that a person will drive more safely and avoid accidents, as well.
Car Designs Save Fuel and Reduce Accidents
Car manufacturers are working to create lighter, smaller vehicles that consume far less gasoline. These cars cause less damage when they are involved in an accident, which can have a positive impact in the rate of auto accident fatalities.
People who drive smaller cars are also more likely to drive defensively because they are closer to the road. Large trucks and SUVs can make a person feel insulated from other vehicles on the road. Smaller cars do not provide that sense of security, so people tend to drive more cautiously when they are in a smaller car.
Unfortunately, not everyone is practicing safer driving. The higher numbers of small cars on the road mean more people are vulnerable to serious injuries from a car accident. If you were seriously injured in an accident, contact our office for a free evaluation of your case.