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AAA warns drivers of drowsiness after DST ends

In anticipation of the end of daylight saving time, AAA is warning people in Virginia and across the U.S. of the danger of drowsy driving. One might think that an extra hour of sleep will reduce the chances of drowsy driving, but the change in the sleep schedule will have an impact on the body's internal clock. Drivers may have trouble concentrating on the road in the days subsequent to this change.

The safety benefits of roundabouts

Motorists in Virginia and throughout America may not necessarily be familiar with roundabouts. Furthermore, they may seem more complicated and dangerous than a traditional intersection at first glance. However, data from the Federal Highway Administration revealed that there was a 37% decline in accidents when a road had a roundabout instead of a traffic light. This was largely because accidents occurred at slower rates of speed. Therefore, they were less intense and less likely to result in fatalities or property damage.

Teen drivers and distractions

Thousands of teen drivers are killed or injured in car accidents around the country each year, and many of them are distracted when they crash. Cellphone use is widely regarded as the leading cause of driver distraction in Virginia and elsewhere, but researchers at Michigan State University found that teen motorists are more likely to be involved in a collision when their attention is caught by something outside the vehicle like an accident or police traffic stop.

Arkansas, Louisiana, Montana have most teen drunk drivers

Teens in Arkansas are more likely to drink and drive than teens in other states, according to a report by an insurance comparison website. Federal statistics show that drunk driving deaths account for one-third of all U.S. traffic fatalities each year.

Study shows increased speed limits related to higher deaths

As Virginia and other states continue to raise speed limits, roadway safety groups grow more concerned. A study by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety determined approximately 37,000 more people have lost their lives in accidents due to raising the speed limit.

Fall driving presents unique risks

Fall weather can lead to unpredictable conditions on the road. A sunny, clear day can change in a matter of moments to cold and rainy. With shorter fall days, drivers are more likely to find themselves driving in the dark, which can be more dangerous than daytime driving. To stay safe on the road during fall driving, drivers should prepare for potential hazards like sun glare, frost and fog.

Road rage poses an increasing menace

Most Virginia drivers are peripherally aware of the risks of being involved in a car crash although they seldom let it concern them. While statistically, the average driver will have several accidents during their driving lifetime, the roads are generally becoming safer each year. However, a specific area of highway safety has drawn the attention of officials and is one that all drivers should be acutely aware of every time they get behind the wheel. Incidents of road rage are increasing dramatically, often with serious and sometimes fatal results.

Safety technologies reduce risk of serious crashes

Automated features are becoming more popular among drivers in Virginia and across the country. Many features aim to reduce dangerous traffic accidents by introducing greater levels of computerized alerts, controls and warning systems. According to one study released by GM, these features can have a significant impact on reducing crashes. Commonly called advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS), these technologies include lane change alerts, blind-spot detection, collision alerts and rearview cameras as well as advancements in braking systems.

2017 sees 10-year high in red-light running crash deaths

In 2017, the latest year for which complete crash data exists, there were 939 deaths caused by drivers who ran red lights. Virginia residents should know that this marks a 10-year high. The numbers may be getting even higher, too, considering how distracted driving is becoming a widespread phenomenon.

The dangers of drowsy driving and how to prevent it

Those who drive on roads and highways in Virginia while fatigued could be putting themselves and others in danger. A tired driver is three times more likely to get into an accident compared to someone who is adequately rested. Furthermore, a person who has not slept in 20 hours will have the same level of impairment as an individual with a blood alcohol content of .08%. According to a National Sleep Foundation study, 20% of participants acknowledged falling asleep behind the wheel in the past year.

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