Many families take advantage of the summer break to take vacations, but these fun-seekers also increase the number of vehicles on the road. That, in turn, can increase the likelihood of an accident. Celebratory holidays like May Day, Memorial Day, Juneteenth, Independence Day, and Labor Day can involve drinking. And drinking and driving don’t mix. Let’s take a look at some of the common reasons why car crashes increase during the summer months and what you can do to stay safe.
Common Reasons for the Increase in Summer Collisions
Car accidents occur more frequently in the summer for a variety of reasons, but most of them have to do with the number of drivers on the road. Causes include:
- Vacationers. Many Americans use the summer months to take vacations, which means there are more cars traveling on unfamiliar roads than usual. Due to seasonal tourism, car accidents are more likely.
- Inexperienced drivers. When grade schools release students for the summer, more teen drivers get on the road to summer jobs and activities. Teen drivers might be less familiar with traffic laws and not know how to react in emergencies.
- Seasonal road construction. In some regions, including New York, local and state governments use warmer months to complete necessary road maintenance. Construction zones can be dangerous for drivers, especially in already crowded city streets. Falling debris, construction vehicles and equipment, and other hazards can cause crashes when in or near the roadway.
- High temperatures. Rising temperatures can cause vehicle engines to overheat and can vehicle parts to malfunction. Road trippers are especially prone to the effects of rising temperatures when they use their vehicle for days at a time.
- Hazardous weather conditions. Rain and thunderstorms can reduce road visibility and increase the likelihood of an accident.
- Drunk driving. Drunk driving is all too common in the summer, especially on holidays like July 4th. Driving while drunk impairs a driver’s ability to concentrate and can cause them to make dangerous traffic maneuvers. It also slows a driver’s reaction time and limits their ability to judge traffic situations.
What to Do If You’ve Been in an Accident
If you have been injured in an accident in New York or Long Island caused by someone else’s negligence, there are several steps you should take in the hours, days, and weeks after the crash. Doing so could help you get the compensation you’re entitled to.
- Seek medical attention – Seeking prompt medical attention is crucial even if you feel fine. Insurance companies usually require that you be evaluated within a “reasonable” amount of time after an accident in order to be eligible for the maximum compensation you’re owed. After your initial evaluation, consider keeping a pain journal, which is a log of your injuries and physical symptoms over time. Be sure to follow your doctor’s orders, attend prescribed physical therapy sessions, and keep records from all of your medical treatments.
- Gather documentation – Obtain a copy of the police report and gather together your medical records, including medical bills, prescription bottle labels, doctor’s notes. All of this will be important evidence in your claim.
- Don’t post on social media – It’s best to avoid discussing the accident publicly until your claim is resolved. The insurance company will take any reason to reduce or deny your claim, including a selfie of you smiling with friends. They might treat your posts as evidence that your injuries weren’t as serious as you claim.
- Consult with an attorney – Recovering from injuries after a car accident is challenging enough, so don’t try to build a case for compensation on your own. A New York car crash attorney with Finz & Finz, P.C. on Long Island can take some of the burden off of you by investigating your claim, collecting evidence, and building a strong case for compensation.
Safety Tips for Drivers
Predicting how other drivers will behave on the road is impossible, but there are certain steps you can take to protect yourself and your passengers on the road this summer.
Before Your Trip:
- Put together a safety kit. Stock your vehicle with water, snacks, medicine, jumper cables, car repair tools, a first aid kit, chargers, and other essentials in case of emergencies on the road.
- Use straps to tie heavy items down. If you’re carrying luggage on top of your car or in the bed of your truck, don’t let it shift around. This could be dangerous if you need to come to a quick stop, so it’s always a good idea to tie down your cargo.
- Inspect your vehicle and make any necessary repairs. Have the oil changed or top it off, check your tire pressure, get a tune-up, and make sure your vehicle is road-ready before you leave home.
On the trip:
- Wear seat belts. Make sure that you and all your passengers are strapped in before you head out. If you have infants or young children, make sure that their car seats are fastened and properly installed.
- Don’t get distracted. Distracted driving is a common cause of accidents in New York. Whenever a driver focuses on another activity while driving, including texting, talking on the phone, eating, drinking, and other activities, the likelihood of a crash increase.
- Don’t drink and drive. Drinking and driving is dangerous and against the law. If you consume alcohol, make sure to designate a driver. Never get behind the wheel while intoxicated.
How Finz & Finz, P.C., Can Help
The New York car accident attorneys at Finz & Finz, P.C., are dedicated to fighting for the rights of car accident victims in New York. If you’ve been injured in a New York car accident this summer, you could be entitled to compensation for the cost of your medical expenses, lost income, property damage, and pain and suffering. Our experienced attorneys can work tirelessly to help you seek the settlement you deserve. Contact us today for a free consultation.