The most dangerous part of the day for commuters is driving to work in the morning, and the return trip home in the evening. Commuters try to reach their destination “on time,” while battling traffic congestion, reckless drivers, large tracks, construction, and poor road conditions. During an 8 to 5 work week, this heavy traffic creates significant safety risks that can result in deadly accidents.
Our auto accident attorneys know of several factors that contribute to commuter traffic accidents.
- Zoning Out
When we drive the same route to work every day, the familiarity can cause motorists to “zone out” and not pay attention to their surroundings. Commuters can lose focus and drive on “auto pilot,” while ignoring potentially dangerous situations. This can also occur while driving on long stretches of empty highway. If possible, motorists should vary their routes to work and stay focused on the task of driving.
- Driving Distracted
“Operating your vehicle should always be the top priority when you’re behind the wheel. However, driving while distracted is one of the leading causes of traffic accidents and fatalities,” says Mitch Rice, auto accident attorney. “Commuters need to avoid eating breakfast, putting on makeup, reading, texting, phone calls, and other distractions when driving during rush hour.”
- Work-Related Stress
It’s easy to let stress or drama from the office follow us home. It can be especially dangerous if this stress distracts us while driving. Stop thinking about work-related issues during your commute. Give yourself a break, listen to your favorite music, take a deep breath, and concentrate on the road ahead.
- Running Late
“Commuters mistakenly under-estimate rush hour traffic, which then causes them to run late,” says Mike Wyatt, auto accident attorney. “This results in commuters driving aggressively and taking dangerous risks. Speeding, tailgating, and recklessly weaving through traffic lanes can result in tragedy. Give yourself enough time by leaving early to anticipate heavy traffic.”