Anxious and Out-of-Touch Drivers — And the Dangers They Pose During the COVID Pandemic
When COVID lockdowns first took over, many people assumed that a silver lining would involve reduced car accidents and fatalities. After all, it stands to reason that more people working or studying from home will translate to fewer cars on the road — and a reduced likelihood of collision.
Unfortunately, these predictions haven’t played out as expected. If anything, some drivers view the comparatively empty roads as an opportunity to behave even more recklessly than they did prior to the pandemic. Others are simply too anxious or exhausted to stay safe.
How Stress Increases the Risk of Collision
Mental health issues are on the rise in a COVID world. These impact all aspects of our day-to-day lives, including our behavior behind the wheel.
Research published in the European Journal of Work and Organizational Psychology indicates that stress can increase the odds of getting involved in a car accident. While this study specifically examines work-related stress, experts believe that other sources of worry can prove similarly distracting behind the wheel.
Can Drivers Lose Skills After a Break?
Driving after a long hiatus can feel strange. Even when unencumbered by stress or exhaustion, some people may find it difficult to drive safely if they’re out of practice. Drivers feel even more out of touch in high-traffic areas once navigated with ease. This can prompt a negative spiral of anxiety and distraction, which, as mentioned above, are top contributors to collisions.
Dealing With Stress and Rusty Driving Skills During COVID
Whether you feel stressed or simply out of practice, it’s important to maintain safe habits behind the wheel during this difficult time. Now, more than ever, it’s crucial to avoid texting and other sources of distraction. If overcome by anxiety while on the road, pull over to take a break.
If you were harmed by negligence on the road, don’t hesitate to seek legal guidance from Regan Zambri Long PLLC.