Understanding Seat Belt Laws in DC, Virginia, and Maryland

  Fortunately, the days where seatbelts were optional are over. However, just because it’s illegal to not wear a seatbelt, doesn’t mean everyone wears a seat belt while in the car. Data from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration found that of the 37,133 people that were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2017, 47% were not wearing seat belts. Tragically, that percentage is even higher for teenagers ages 13 to 15 (54%). Safety The most important reason to always wear a seat belt is because seat belts save lives. The NHTSA reports that between 1960 and 2012, seat belts…

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Crash Statistics: Drivers Involved in Crashes Admit Risky Behavior

  Distracted driving continues to be a major cause of accidents in America. While this unlikely comes as a surprise, what is surprising is how little improvement has been made. Recently, AAA released a report that analyzed data from drivers involved in at least one crash in the last two years. Here are some of their key findings: 50% of those involved in a recent crash admit to talking on a hand-held device while driving in the past month, compared to 42% not involved in a crash. 43% of those involved in a recent crash admit to texting while driving…

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The Dangers of Daylight Saving Time: How Can You Avoid Them?

  Daylight Saving Time isn’t a mere annoyance — it’s a verifiable source of danger. Every year, motor vehicle accidents and fatalities skyrocket right after we move the clocks forward or back. The human body simply can’t handle this sudden change. With a little preparation, however, it’s possible to plan ahead and avoid the worst of this dreaded date: Build Light Into Your Transportation Things are about to get a whole lot darker as we fall back. Spotting road hazards is tough enough when dealing with disrupted sleep, but the increased darkness certainly doesn’t help matters. A few simple steps…

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The Dangerous Drivers of the COVID-19 Pandemic

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…

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Highway Fatality Rates Increase Despite Less Drivers on the Road

  The National Safety Council has reported that, based on preliminary nationwide data from May, people traveling by roads had a higher risk of dying from a motor vehicle crash for the third month in a row. We previously wrote about this issue in May, and the trend of more dangerous driving has continued. The fatality rate is a measure of deaths due to collisions per 100 million vehicle miles. The fatality rate includes deaths of drivers, passengers, pedestrians, cyclists, etc., and is a good indicator of dangerous driving. The number of miles driven in May 2020 decreased by 25.5%…

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Car Insurance Requirements in the DC Metro Area

If you have spent time in the District of Columbia, it doesn’t take you long to learn that most of the people who work in the city don’t actually live there. Commuters travel freely between DC, Virginia, and Maryland, all of which have different car insurance requirements. When you have a car accident in DC, you may be dealing with any one of these laws. District of Columbia Insurance Requirements If you have a car accident in DC, the insurance coverage that you have will pay for your damages, and the other driver’s coverage will pay his damages. This is…

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Driving Down, Speeding Up

  This week, the Washington Post reported that instances of reckless driving have increased substantially across the country since March, when nearly every state implemented a “stay at home” order. While traffic nationwide is down 41%, automobile crashes are down only 21%, and some of the country’s most congested traffic areas have reported dramatic increases in average speeds. For example, the speed limit on the DMV’s Capital Beltway is 55 mph, but speeds during the pre-pandemic rush hour averaged only 27 mph. Now, Beltway drivers are traveling at an average speed of 70 mph during what used to be rush…

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Highway Safety: Driving Tips for People Who Avoid Busy Roads

Highways can efficiently get you from point A to point B, but they can prove extremely nerve-wracking in times of heavy traffic. Back roads, although less intimidating, are far from perfect. Not only can they become just as congested, but frequent stops at lights and signs also harm gas mileage and cause significant wear and tear. The following suggestions may make highway driving more manageable: Watch the Speed Posted speed limits vary dramatically from one area to the next. Depending on the location, you could be legally permitted to travel 80 miles per hour or restricted to just 40 miles…

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Top Black Ice Dangers — And What to Do About Them

Winter weather sparks its fair share of grumbling, but some conditions extend beyond annoying to prove downright dangerous. Black ice, in particular, places drivers and pedestrians at risk. It can’t always be avoided, but preventative efforts can at least reduce the risk of spin-outs or falls. Driving With black ice, the cliche of an ounce of protection being worth a pound of cure definitely applies. Some areas are more prone to black ice than others — and should be handled accordingly. Tree-lined roads and other areas lacking sunshine are particularly vulnerable. Lesser-traveled roads tend to form more black ice than…

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Frost on the Roads: Identifying the Dangers And Navigating Around Them

Believe it or not, there’s plenty to love about the cold season. Road conditions, however, do not belong on that list of positives. With the end of summer construction comes a sudden increase in weather-based hazards that place even the most attentive drivers at risk. With a little awareness, however, it’s possible to navigate winter roads without finding yourself in harm’s way. Ice Is Not the Only Danger Winter drivers are well aware of the perils posed by black ice, but this is by no means the only cold-weather hazard that can make roads dangerous in the winter. Frost can…

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