As people around the globe struggle through the COVID-19 pandemic, it may be also worth considering another health crisis that has been going on for decades. COVID-19 has already tragically killed 250,000 (at the time of this writing) with more to come. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), road crashes kill 1.35 million people each year globally.
With many states having mandated lockdown of non-essential businesses in the past and people avoiding travel and the workplace, there are far fewer vehicles on roadways. Logic tells us that a decrease in traffic volume would lead to fewer accidents, but you’d be wrong. Many states are seeing a spike in auto fatality rates despite the current situation.
Evidence is beginning to emerge that absent traffic jams during the coronavirus crisis, many drivers are getting more reckless.
Brad says, “Speed is the No. 1 predictor of crash severity, which is why the proportion of people dying per collision is on the rise in many communities.”
Police nationwide have reported clocking speeds close to and sometimes surpassing 100 mph. Besides the obvious risk of getting a ticket, speeding can be deadly for drivers and passengers and could cause a ripple effect that could impact hospitals where they are trying to treat coronavirus patients.
“What’s also worrisome is that many people are tight on money now due to the virus. Cutting back on car insurance may be one of the first steps to relieve the family budget. Reducing coverage should be a last resort. You leave yourself really exposed should you have a car accident,” Brad says. Some of the bigger auto insurers are giving customers a partial premium refund during the pandemic. “I’ve heard that some insurance companies are doing this, but I don’t think the refund will amount to much.”
Before you cancel coverage or stop paying your bill, reach out to your insurer. During financial hardship, some companies are willing to work with customers in the following ways:
- Not charge late fees or other penalties
- Create flexible payment plans
- Pause policy cancellations for nonpayment
- Extend grace periods
Simply put, be careful on the road always — even during the pandemic. These statistics show that just because there have been less people on the road doesn’t mean you can’t injure yourself or someone else. It is also important to understand what coverage you are getting rid of before you do so. It can make a huge difference in your car accident claim in the long run.
As the state of Texas begins to reopen, continue to be cautious on the roadways and always follow the laws and speed limits. If you have been involved in a car accident due to the negligence of someone else, contact our office by filling out this form or give us a call at 817-440-3888.
At Parker Law Firm, our experienced personal injury lawyers believe people matter. We are committed to our clients, not case numbers, and we believe in the power of the civil justice system. With years spent both representing accident victims and participating in the state legislative process, our founder, Brad Parker, has developed a deep understanding of the law and gained unique experience that helps him get results for his clients.