Traffic Crashes Drop on Southland Freeways Due to Coronavirus Pandemic
One of the silver linings the coronavirus pandemic has brought for Southern California has been fewer car accidents. According to an NBC news report, California Highway Patrol data shows a significant drop in crashes on Southland freeways. Car accidents in Los Angeles, Orange, Riverside, San Bernardino and Ventura counties dropped 73% last month during the coronavirus pandemic compared to March 2019, a data analysis by NBC shows.
Changes Due to Coronavirus Shutdowns
The total number of car crashes went from 21,270 in March 2019 to 5,827 last month. With fewer drivers behind the wheel due to stay-at-home orders, Los Angeles County recorded two fatal car accidents last month compared to 50 in the same month in 2019. The CHP recorded zero fatal crashes in San Bernardino and Ventura this past month.
Safety experts say since the amount of travel has fallen so sharply, the most we’ve ever seen in the modern era, traffic accidents have also fallen. The total fatal car accidents for the five Southern California counties went from 100 in March 2019 to six last month, which is a 94% drop. The number of crashes resulting in injuries went from 8,390 in March 2019 to 1,889 last month, which is a 77% drop. This is also a trend that is being seen statewide.
Some researchers say the COVID-19 shutdown could be a really interesting experiment in traffic management and how we respond as drivers. They say the coronavirus traffic data could inform discussions about the high toll driving takes and also about environmental and economic impacts. There could also be solid social benefits as people could resort to exercising more and eating healthier, experts say.
Driving in the Time of Coronavirus
While these numbers are promising, there are some problems on our roadways that have cropped up because of the coronavirus shutdowns. Across the nation, we are seeing speeding drivers because roadways are empty. Here in Southern California, we’ve also seen an increase in incidents involving street racers who are likely emboldened by the fact that there is far less traffic on the roadways and freeways. In addition, across the United States, we are seeing an increase in incidents of road rage because people who are cooped up at home trying to deal with challenges such as job losses and income losses might be more frustrated when they hit the road.
These are things to be mindful of when we head out for groceries or other necessities during the lockdown. If you have been injured in a car accident in Southern California during the coronavirus shutdown, you can still contact one of our experienced car accident attorneys to schedule a free phone or online consultation. We’re working remotely at this time, but we’re always here to help and serve you.