Road traffic fell by 21% in 2021 as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic as people travelled a lot less, but nowadays traffic has returned to almost normal with many people returning to the office at least on a part-time basis. So, what has this meant for road traffic accidents?
Despite the dip in road traffic during the pandemic, statistics show that road collisions resulting in serious injury or death are rising in the UK. The number of accidents leading to serious injury and death rose from 24% to 28% between 2018 and 2020, which is a concerning revelation and one that all motorists need to be aware of. It seems that driver errors or reactions were the main cause of these serious accidents appearing in 66% of police reports.
What Drivers Can do About This?
So, what can you do as a motorist to reduce the chance of accidents and drive safely? With driver errors and reactions, the most common cause of serious accidents, it is clear that these are the areas to focus on first. Errors and slow reactions often result from driving while distracted or because of fatigue, so motorists need to keep distractions to a minimum and avoid driving while fatigued. Of course, avoiding alcohol consumption is also important as many people drive over the limit without realising it (such as the morning after a heavy night).
It is also important to take greater care when driving and give yourself plenty of time to arrive at your destination. People often feel rushed when driving and this is when mistakes can happen, or poor judgement becomes an issue.
It is also important that motorists have the right level of protection in place. In addition to car insurance, you should also consider car gap insurance. Is gap insurance worth it is a common question, but you only have to look at the rise in serious accidents and the rate of depreciation to see why it is worthwhile. Without gap insurance, you could find yourself short by thousands of pounds in the event of a write-off and unable to afford a replacement car.
Will Self-Driving Cars Solve This Problem?
With the gradual move towards self-driving cars, it would make sense that self-driving cars will solve this problem as human error will no longer be an issue. Autonomous features are already making driving safer for motorists and self-driving cars will take this to the next level. Despite this, the technology is not yet perfect and there are logistical issues that need to be resolved, so fully autonomous cars remain some way off yet.
It is concerning to see that serious injuries and fatalities have been rising in the UK and it is important that motorists do all that they can to drive safely on the roads.