There is a certain risk of an accident any time you are on the road, but what you may not realize is that the summer season is the most dangerous time to be driving. Though accidents happen year round, they are more frequent and deadly in the summer months for several reasons.
Learning why the summer is so dangerous can help you protect yourself from a potential accident and better plan your time driving. We are going to discuss some of the reasons the summer months are more dangerous for drivers and what you can do about to keep you and your family safe on the road.
Hot Roads Equal a Higher Chance of Accidents
Whether you’re driving for fun heading towards a vacation or just going about your daily business, one thing is certain, the roads during the summer are hot. As the roads heat up it puts extra wear on your tires.
Hot tires are not good when traveling because the hotter a tire gets, the more likely it is to pop if it is not in great shape or if the air pressure is too high.
You might have heard from your mechanic or others before that in the winter, tire air pressure drops: this is because the cold air causes the molecules of air in the tires to contract. The opposite happens in the summer.
Heat causes the air in the tires to expand and this puts extra pressure on the tires, which raises the risk of them popping. Making sure your tires are in good shape and have the right amount of pressure for summer driving will keep you safe on those hot summer roads.
More Young and Inexperienced Drivers Are on the Roads
In the United States, most students are on a break from school during the summer months and this means that more young drivers are on the roads. Drivers from ages 16 to 25 are much more likely to cause an accident due to multiple factors, but primarily due to their inexperience in dealing with other drivers and road hazards.
Suggestion: Slowest Car In The World – Acceleration 11 to 7.6 Seconds
This means that the chances of getting hit as a pedestrian or bicyclist or being involved in a car accident go up with more of them on the roads, especially traveling across the country. “As the summer heat sets in and the spring grays turn into days full of sunshine, more bicyclists are out on the road,” note Seattle bicycle accident attorneys at The Fang Law Firm, “as bicyclists hit the road in droves, the accident numbers increase.” If you are enjoying the summer weather on the road as a pedestrian, cyclist or while riding a scooter, it is imperative to pay attention to your surroundings, wear bright or reflective clothing and wear appropriate safety gear.
As a driver, there is not a lot you can do to outright avoid these younger, inexperienced drivers. You can protect yourself by remaining vigilant while practicing defensive driving. Give yourself plenty of time to get where you are going, keep your distance from other vehicles and if you see someone driving unsafely, like swerving out of their lane, stay away from them and if it is too bad, call the police and report them. This way if a crash does happen, you will not be part of it.
Weather Conditions Increase Driver Fatigue and Aggravation
We’ve talked about the summer heat already, but what we haven’t mentioned yet is that heat combined with being stuck on the road and other factors like humidity and stress can lead to more aggressive driving and episodes of road rage. You might have seen incidents on TV where a person becomes upset and decides to try and injure other drivers, starts driving offensively, or blatantly causes an accident out of pure road rage.
Rather than engaging in a situation like this, where another driver is behaving aggressively, it is best to de-escalate a situation and leave or back away. If this is not possible or they start to chase you, then pull over in a safe area such as a rest stop, and call the authorities to handle the situation instead. This is the best way to avoid conflict and a potential accident on the road, even if it is not your responsibility to report someone with road rage.
Driving on the road at any time can have its dangers, but in the summer things tend to get ramped up for all the reasons we have listed here and more. If you prepare well, do not rush, and mind your surroundings, you’ll be able to go about your travels without having to worry about getting into an accident with a younger and more inexperienced driver than you.